Among American adults who exercise, 37 percent do so with outdoor sports. That includes 41 percent of exercising men, according to a new fitness survey by technology company ReportLinker.
Not only is outdoor exercise on the rise, the survey says, but it can have a greater motivating effect than indoor exercise, as well as lead to better overall fitness habits.
“Sunlight is a source of vitamin D, essential for many key body processes, including bone health, muscle function and immunity,” exercise physiologist Ben Fletcher told the Telegraph in a related article. “But there’s also evidence that exercising outdoors can make your workout seem less demanding. From appreciating your surroundings to taking care where you put your feet, you’re so focused on where you are that you pay less attention to how tired you are, and so are able to push yourself further.”
Approximately 28 percent of Americans surveyed said the weather determines whether they exercise indoors or outdoors. Either way, participants were virtually divided on exercising at home (18 percent) versus a gym (17 percent).
In a separate portion of the survey, participants were polled on general exercising methods. Approximately 40 percent said they prefer to train at a fitness center, while 35 percent mentioned basketball (including 46 percent of men) and swimming, 34 percent mentioned jogging and 21 percent mentioned yoga.
Survey participants were also polled on motivation challenges and successes. Approximately 33 percent said their exercising is habitual, while another 30 percent cited the need for fitness goals (43 percent of joggers, specifically). Summit hikes (17 percent), mud runs (16 percent) and marathons (14 percent) ranked among the most popular goal-oriented events with survey participants.
The importance of exercise partners was also cited by many survey participants, specifically when it comes to basketball (42 percent), swimming (38 percent) and jogging (33 percent).
Additionally, the survey noted that approximately 60 percent of exercisers who care about their shape and looks said they have improved their eating habits.
The full ReportLinker survey can be viewed here.