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  • Gary Roethenbaugh

Sharing insights into athlete motivations during Covid-19

At MultiSport Research we are are pleased to release summary findings from a recent study into athlete motivations during the current Covid-19 crisis.

The research is provided free of charge to industry stakeholders in order to help them plan during these tremendously challenging times (details below).

The research was undertaken via an athlete survey. This ran during the month of April in order to try and understand endurance sport athlete sentiment. It covered a number of areas, including:

  • Athletes’ current vs typical participation in endurance sport

  • Increase or decrease in activity due to social distancing

  • Levels of concern about Covid-19

  • Attitudes to training & rescheduled events

  • Views on race cancellations

  • Attitudes to virtual racing

  • Gear expenditure

  • Athlete types, levels of experience & training hours

  • Summary demographics

A range of endurance sport organizations circulated the survey – from national governing bodies, to event organizers, coaching firms and brand owners. Athletes were targeted via e-mail and social in a number of key international markets, including the USA, UK and others.

Gary Roethenbaugh, Managing Director at MultiSport Research, said “A big thank you to all organisations who partnered on this initiative at short notice, and to the athletes who gave up their time during these difficult circumstances.

“A total of 4,340 survey responses from athletes in a number of key international markets sets a good baseline for future research in this area.”

Summary findings from the April 2020 Endurance Sport Athlete Motivations Study include:

  • With social distancing & lockdown in place, usual levels of outdoor training activity by endurance athletes have seen a slight drop

  • As gyms have closed during lockdown, overall, indoor activities have not spiked

  • Although, cyclists & triathletes specifically have shifted to indoor riding

  • 47% of athletes are worried about the impact of Covid-19 on their health & wellbeing

  • 43% are worried about the impact of Covid-19 on their income/earnings

  • 19% of respondents are aiming to race an event as soon as event restrictions are lifted

  • 34% are expecting to race in September-October 2020

  • 57% have reduced their expenditure on endurance sport gear

  • Post Covid-19, 34% expect to increase on normal gear spending levels

Gary added, “A significant majority of athletes see their current training regimes as being important for health and wellbeing. This also remains linked to event goals, with event participation and sign-up expected when Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.

“We will continue to monitor athlete motivations over the coming months and hope to see the industry adapt to the ‘new normal’ we are currently facing.”

MultiSport Research is planning an update to the research in order to track sentiment as the Covid-19 crisis evolves. To participate in the research or find out more, please get in touch with us directly.

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