Consumer response to the Covid-19 crisis – Part 5

Apr 20, 2020 |4 min read
covid-19 crisis impact uncertainty

In light of the dramatic changes to our lives responding to the pandemic, we are asking people across the globe to share their stories on the Covid-19 crisis in a series of selfie videos. Helping both us and our clients, keep tabs on the rapid pace of change and consumer response. 

Our fifth instalment on the Covid-19 crisis explores how UK consumers relationship with sport and exercise has changed, and what inspires us to stay active in these challenging circumstances.

It's clear that life has shifted dramatically in the UK over the past month. From working life to socialising, our routines have been disrupted, priorities have changed, and we are learning to adapt to restrictions in place. When it comes to our sport and exercise habits, it's no different. The closure of gyms, cancellation of sporting events and restrictions on movement outside of our homes are impacting upon and reshaping how we're approaching keeping active in our lives. For some, it means adapting habits and routines to suit this 'new normal', and for others it's a perfect opportunity to try YouTube yoga or start couch to 5k, where previously time or inclination has been a barrier.

We are seeing people using the current situation to adapt their approaches to being active in really creative and fun ways - whether that be building an at home gym in the garden, using water bottles as weights or even building a skateboard ramp, we are creatively using the space we have both indoors and outdoors to our advantage. Undoubtably, for those who find exercise plays a big role in their lives, being able to adapt in creative ways is helping to keep a sense of normality.

In this time, exercise has taken on a whole new meaning for many people; it's not focussed on the benefits for their external appearance, but for their own emotional and personal wellbeing. We're not hearing that people are exercising to look good, we're hearing that people are exercising to feel good for themselves!

As we have discussed in previous posts, we have found a new sense of appreciation for what lies on our doorstep, but also for the time we get to spend outside our homes. Whether it's walking, cycling or running, government rules mean that we are having to make the most of our one exercise trip a day, and relish the time we can spend outside. 

For many, exercise is being used as a catalyst for providing structure and routine in times when this feels tricky to maintain. Here, sport and fitness personalities such as Joe Wicks have proven to be a huge source of motivation and inspiration for adults and children alike. P.E. with Joe at 9am is the perfect way for parents to kick off the home school day!

But crucially, we are using sport and exercise to provide some relief from the Covid-19 crisis - relief from the days that can feel monotonous, relief from the kids or relief from the stresses of working from home. Whether it's simply a stroll around the block to get the endorphins flowing or an online class, just being active is proving to be a crucial daily activity that we now look forward to.