Sport as consumption
A growing number of consumers are devoting more time and money to participating in sport. Driven by increasingly urban and sedentary lifestyles in both developed and emerging markets. In some cases participation in sport is becoming a social identifier; e.g. “I am a tri-athlete.”
This trend can be seen across the age spectrum, from the increasingly structured play of childhood, to the desire of ageing baby-boomers to remain active for as long as possible.
Running from obesity
Obesity is increasingly identified as a public health issue, receiving a huge amount of media coverage and public policy attention, helping to raise public awareness of the importance of exercise and sport.
Fitness is increasingly portrayed as an important aspect of attractiveness in mass media. As a result, it can be difficult for the average person not to feel vaguely inadequate when confronted with airbrushed images of “perfection.”
Arrested development to adulthood
The timing of the progression from childhood to adulthood has shifted, with a growing number of young people delay marriage and starting a family. Many Gen-Y consumers now have more time to devote to sporting activities.
Delaying the ageing process
For many middle aged and older consumers, delaying the ageing process is a major driver of participation in sport. Health and vanity are both important motivators in this regard.
Don’t be a girl-man
Among men, sedentary occupations can engender feelings of emasculation, which is helping to drive participation in sports, particularly endurance sports, adventure sports and combat sports.
I play, therefore I am
A growing number of middle class striver's are treating sport in a manner similar to their careers. For some, sport has become a way of differentiating themselves from the herd and being identified as being part of an elite.