Benefit Systems SA

02/23/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 02/23/2021 04:56

Fitness online – how do Poles exercise during the pandemic?

Almost a year of struggle with the pandemic, including social isolation and the prolonged closure of sports facilities, caused many Poles to transfer their sports habits to their homes. According to Deloitte, 50% of physical activity enthusiasts became interested in online fitness classes during the pandemic. This is also confirmed by data from the training platform whose popularity has increased fivefold in recent months. There are many indications that online sport will stay with us for longer as an important support for those who start exercising, those who are undecided on specific activities as well as those who are eagerly waiting to return to their favourite workouts in sports facilities.

According to the MultiSport Index 2020 survey, the level of physical activity of Poles has been systematically increasing in recent years (on average by over 2% per year). At the beginning of last year, 65% of Poles engaged in physical activity at least once a month but due to the spring lockdown as many as 43% of active residents of Poland limited their training. The most frequently indicated reason for this change was the closure of sports and recreational facilities. Just four months after the pandemic was announced, as many as 75% of sports facilities' owners participating in the European Deloitte survey admitted that they were working on creating dedicated online training applications. One of the first solutions that was created on the Polish market at the beginning of the spring lockdown was the training platform, currently offering over 800 various forms of activity. During the first six months of its operations, its clients performed over 150,000 workouts. The most popular ones were exercises for a healthy spine and training that increases stabilisation and strengthens back muscles.

- More and more people working from home are struggling with problems resulting from a non-ergonomic workplace. Lack of the right chair or desk can cause many health ailments, negatively affecting, among others, on the spine, as shown in the research by scientists from the Opole University of Technology. For a long time, we have been observing a growing interest in those online classes which have a positive effect on body posture and reduce pain in various parts of the spine. Last year, online sports training was the only chance for many Poles to keep fit. Additionally, for 41% of physically active Poles sport has become a way to alleviate stress caused by the pandemic. Regular exercise is the most important and the most accessible element of preventive health care. Therefore, as many as 75% of sports enthusiasts do not want to give up physical activity, regardless of the development of the epidemic situation. Online solutions fit these needs, hence the great interest in their offer - says Tomasz Groń, Managing Director at Benefit Systems, Fitness Branch, responsible for the development of the platform.

How do Poles exercise online?

According to the statistics of users' activity, Poles most often train in the middle of the week, usually before or after work. The most popular time for exercise is 19:00. The users most often choose workouts strengthening the spine, shaping the figure and reducing body fat.

Exercise how you want, when you want... knowingly - what will you find in a virtual fitness club?

One of the advantages of online training is that you can do it anywhere, anytime. The platform has also gone a step further, focusing on the maximum adaptation of workouts to the needs of exercisers, providing classes of various purposes and levels of advancement. Customers are also offered training programmes tailored to different age groups, including children and seniors.

- Online platforms offer many opportunities to create solutions that respond to various, individual customer needs. While working on, we took many factors into account, including the level of knowledge of the basics of exercise, age, and health needs of the participants. Hence fit-tests, among others, which determine our physical fitness and allow us to track the effects of exercises as well as educational materials such as podcasts, how-to articles and instructions for proper and safe exercise. Thanks to this, in addition to the training library, we have access to knowledge about a healthy and active lifestyle as well as proper nutrition. This is especially important for people who are just starting their adventure with physical activity - explains Tomasz Groń.

What about our favourite trainer who motivated us to be active?

- Our platform allows you to participate in live classes with trainers from the largest fitness networks in Poland. So far, we have completed several hundred hours of live workouts. When sports facilities are still difficult to access, the trainer who conducts live classes provides motivation during training. It should be expected that over time such solutions will be a natural supplement to the training offer of fitness clubs. However, they will never replace visits to a facility where you can use a wide range of sports equipment - says Tomasz Groń.