Britons Swap Health Clubs for the Park

Young woman jogging through the parkIt seems that people are finally realising that they can achieve as good a workout for free in their local park, than they can by joining an overpriced gym.

Overweight Brits are ditching the gym and opting for “DIY” fitness solutions. Last year, 54,000 fewer adults joined health clubs compared with the previous 18 months.

Instead they are opting to get fit at home or going for a run or walk at a local park. Health experts say clubs are sterile places where repetitive use of equipment is boring.

And Martin Hagger, a health psychologist at the University of Nottingham, said “Gyms feed into people’s insecurities about their weight and appearance.”


Five years ago, gym numbers peaked at 8.7 million, accountancy firm Deloitte said. But a fall in new applications has led to a 17% drop in fees. However, the Fitness Industry Association insisted: “There is no evidence there has been a downturn.”

We at Motley Health are in favour of home exercise regimes. By exercising at home, you always have access to your gym equipment, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Bad weather, bad traffic and gym closures for “staff training” need never keep you away from your training.

Calories Per Minute of Exercise:

  • Jogging 11.5
  • Cycling 7.8
  • Mowing the lawn 4.8
  • Dancing 4.4
  • Using Wii Fit Circuit Training 4.5

For more ideas on exercising at home, or in a park, check out our articles on circuit training, running, and our 20 minute fitness routine. Also consider building a small home gym and do some weight training.

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