Sports consumer Behavior Essay
Sports consumer Behavior
UK’s sport and physical activity sector has developed over the past 10 years. The sport and leisure sector in the UK has witnessed significant growth within the past decade due to a number of factors; The increased growth and professionalization of national governing bodies. The growth of commercial involvement within sport. Expansion of the health and fitness sector Increased investment into the public sector.
These factors have led to an increase in employment opportunities within this industry, affected how the industry implements and manages sports development and Physical activity in the UK. The impact of the London Olympics has also impacted the UK with increase participation rates pre and post games as well as an expected income, 6. 9% of adults reported that they were motivated to do more sport or recreational physical activity as a result of the UK winning the bid for the 2012 Olympics. 5.
8% reported that they were motivated to do more voluntary work. (sportandrecreation. org. uk,2013) As of 2009, the sport and leisure industry employed 621,000 staff throughout a variety of Sectors including health and fitness, professional services and sport development, with an additional two million volunteers that are involved in the industry for at least one hour per week. (graduatejobsinsport. co. uk, 2013) The sport and leisure sectors can be broken into 3 categories: Public Sector Private/Commercial Sector Voluntary Sector.
The public sector plays a pivotal role in the sports and leisure industry as it is the largest provider of sport and leisure opportunities in the UK as wells being the largest source of employment within the industry. This is owing to the social and political benefits associated with participating in sport and leisure activities. Government invests funding into NGBs and local authorities through Sport England to encourage participation in sport and physical activity via the provision of an increased number of affordable opportunities.
Participation in sport and leisure activities have always been seen as a cultural importance therefore, local authorities have long promoted and invested to provide for leisure and recreation opportunities for their constituency. Approximately 7. 5 million adults and 2. 1 million children use parks for sporting activities each year and Local councils provide an estimated total of 21,000 play grounds and Play areas as stated by Torkildsen . G (2005) Torkildsen . G (2005) also states that it’s down to local government discretion to be provide leisure and recreation as there is little legislation that requires so.
Their involvement is motivated by social and political objectives. Local authorities make necessary leisure provision on a whole range of perceived benefits to the community; adding to the quality of life, providing for the socially disadvantaged, supporting education of children and young people especially attracting tourists and reducing crime, promoting health and preserving heritage and cultural uniqueness of their district. 2. sport and leisure organisations In a recent Mintel (2003) survey, the rate of health clubs and membership subscription to such clubs has had a steady increase during the last 10 years in the UK.
During a four year period from 1998 to 2002, there was an 18% growth in the number of private health clubs. In addition to this the number of membership subscription grew from 2. 16 to 3. 78 million; that is, 4. 6% of the adult population to 7. 8%, a 70% increase. These stats do not state a true picture of the whole industry as private health clubs only account half of the market share. GLL Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) is a charitable social enterprise operating over 115 Leisure Venues for 27 key partner organisations in the UK With a turnover for 2012 set for ?
120m. GLL was founded in 1993 and is the UK’s leading leisure provider. As a social enterprise meaning it has charitable status making it a not for profit company. Profits which are made are reinvested back into the local community. The company combines aspects of the public sector ethos of putting service high on its agenda but it also adopts business acumen of a private sector to maximise profits that can then be invested back into the community. They have successfully implemented many number of strategies as noted on the noted on their website gll.
org (2013, accessed 10. 01. 13) and continue to grow the sport structure in the UK in line with the Olympic legacy. GLL have a number of aims and aspirations for the future development of sport and social inclusion It’s the Olympic legacy strategy is available to the public on their website tiled GLLINSPIRED (Sport and social legacy commitments, 2012-2016), this document set out it ambition to increase sport and leisure activity participation by through a number innovative that concede with government strategies such as the Game play (2002) and Playing to win (2008).
This document clearly set out GLL’s ambition and targets for 2016 Raising participation 1 Annual GLL visits: 40,500,000 2016 2 GLL everyday sport sessions: 365 3 Support community and sport events: 52 4 Our Greatest Challenge Partner Centres: 100 GLL Sport Foundation (GSF) / talent pathways 5 Annual number of GSF supported athletes: 2,250 6 To provide GSF support in GLL partner regions: 30 7 To extend GSF support to partner sport trusts: 3 8 SportsAid partnerships.
Sports and activity brands 9 Core set of sport and activity brands in GLL partner regions: 30 10 Increase sports and activity course spaces offered: 2,160,000 Sport development and National Governing Bodies (NGB) 11 Formal memorandum of understanding with NGBs: 6 12 NGB partnership programmes in key regions: 6 Social Inclusion GLL has successfully introduced many inclusive initiatives into its partnership to promote and encourage more people to visit the leisure centres regardless of the ethnicity, gender disability or financial background.
This social inclusion agenda is as important to us as ensuring a value of money service GLL’s leisure venues offer a wide range of sporting activities which include• Learn to swim programmes with progressive pathways into elite levels such as Talent lanes, Beacon Programmes and Clubs. Athletic programmes, Triathlon clubs, Football drop in sessions and courses.
Indoor and outdoor sports such us badminton, volley ball, netball and tennis Climbing walls. Over the year GLL have developed a strong partnerships with the following: ASA, British Paralympics Association, England athletics, British Olympic associations, Sports England, British Gymnastics, Climb London and various football clubs amongst many others.
GLL aspires to fit and develop to the government’s plans for now and the future paying great enthuses to social inclusion and providing sport at affordable prices which serves a wide purpose and agenda for all walks of the local communities across the UK Virgin Active Virgin Active is a premier chain of health clubs part of the Richard Branson’s empire, Virgin Group which at the higher ends of the market. It has clubs in South Africa, Namibia, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Australia and the United Kingdom. The company launched in 1998 in Preston, Lancashire.
According to Wikipedia (2013) in 2006 Virgin acquired UK-based operation off Holmes Place chain, thus increasing its UK chain of clubs from 24 to 72 overnight and in 2011 it announced the takeover of UK gym operator Esporta’s 55 clubs increasing the UK business to 124 clubs clubs with 920,000 members . From research it is not clear how much Virgin are committed to involving the local community in their sport delivery plans.
It is evident from the company’s website virginactive. co. uk (2013, accessed 10. 01.13) has a an extensive range of facilities that can be used by members to improve the level of fitness, attend ASA swimming lessons and enhance their lives by taking advantage of these benefits Again Virgin has wide range of sporting facilities which include Gyms, Swimming Pools, outdoor facilities, spa, personal training facilities and group exercise classes. Virgin promotes a health living style through it partnership with Pruhealth offering a discounted membership for those who participate in physical activity as stated on the company’s website virginactive.co. uk (2013, accessed 10. 01. 13)
Virgin is the proud to sponsor the world’s largest and most iconic triathlon. Attracting over 13,000 participants (virginactive. co. uk, 2013, accessed 10. 01. 13) In comparison to GLL, Virgin Active do not have information available to explain their involvement in sport development linked with Government themes and policies and it is difficult to pin point what the target market is.
Based on available information one would assume that the market is the more the wealthy end of the community. It is not easy for onlookers to be clear of Virgin Actives values and goals relating to the structure of sport and recreation in the UK. It is clear that they provide financially credible, high quality programmes and facilities for the slightly more wealthy section of the community and definitely offers the pathways for this community to thrive and grow by using the memberships available.
3. “sport can never be equitable” UK Sport defines equality as “treating individuals equally, which does not necessarily mean treating everyone the same Achieving equality will result in policies , processes and actions that allocate (or reallocate) recourses and entitlements fairly and without discrimination. Female’s athletes are at the forefront of being sexualised and lack of female sporting role models, due to media coverage of female’s sport.
Media coverage of female athletes on the sporting field is lacking due to the male dominance and preference of sport, therefore female athletes are using their looks instead of athletic talent to fight for sponsorships and sporting media coverage for example; Swimmer Amanda Beard who has become widely known for her look rather than her athletic achievements (Daniels,2009). The issue of female athletes being sexualised in media coverage is not healthy, over sexed images of women athletes may send the wrong message to females that their bodies are valued as sexual objects rather than as athletic talent (Daniels,2009).
To combat issues it is suggestion for the use of time, funding to encourage female athletes to look athletic in media coverage instead of sexy. Gibson (2007) suggested implication for practice would be the inclusion of educational programs to educate the coaches and athletes on the ramifications of not engaging in healthy eating and exercise habits, this could also be suggested for younger girls participating in social sport or in a school environment, to send the message media coverage of sexualised athletes is not healthy. Based on the above statements the UK will continue to tackle equity issues.
With growing populations of ethnic minority groups and religious believes the provision for sport has changed significantly over the last 10 years. We have seen a rise in provision for women only sporting activities such us swimming sessions, gym only sessions, women’s football etc. Torkildsen . G (2005) suggest that Choice and participation are influenced by the personality of the individual, his or her needs or interest, physical and social ability, the culture in which one is born a person’s will and purpose in life and a whole range of other factors.
Three factors are significant: age, stage in family life cycle gender and education. 4. Provision is capable of meeting the demands of contemporary issues within the UK’s society. Based on these finding in an ideal world it would be great to say that sport is equitable but there is still a long way to go. However, in comparison to previous years, equality is in a much in stronger position to turn this around regardless of how long it may take and the number of initiatives needed. . On one hand the UK has one of the best sporting provisions to tackle this issue 5.
Investigate the Government’s involvement in sport and physical activity Fox and Hillsdon (2007) suggest with the absence of a direct evidence for a causal link between physical activity and obesity prevention, there are multiple sources of indirect evidence to suggest a shift in energy expenditure requirements as the habits of the UK pollution changes over the past. This owing to a number of changing factors including; As the UK moves from an industrial to service-based economy, fewer jobs were requiring physical work and an increased labour-saving technology in the home, work and retail environments.
Therefore Physical inactivity is associated with increased risk of several common diseases and disorders including coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes and some mental health problems such as depression. The evidence is clearly set out in the Chief Medical Officer’s report (2004). Fox and Hillsdon (2007) states Increasing physical activity not only has potential to help tackle the health key health problems. Economically, it helps to reduce costs of inactivity which is estimated at ? 8. 2 billion per year.
For this reason in 2002, Tony Blair’s Labour government published a strategy for sport and physical activity, The Game Plan (2002) One of its two key objectives stated, was to produce ‘a major increase in participation in sport and physical activity’. At the time of the report, it was estimated that more than half the adult population were taking part in sport less than once per month, with participation rates highest in young white men and lowest in disadvantaged groups such as those in lower socioeconomic groups and ethnic minorities.
A target for participation was proposed to increase participation from 30% to 70% of the population to be reasonably active (30 minutes of moderate physical activity five times a week) by 2020. Some of the reasons why government invest so heavily can be explained by how it impacts on the country socially and economically as stated on www. sportandrecreation. org. uk (2013) The number of people with sport-related jobs has reached 621,000 – 1. 8% of all employment in England It is estimated that for every ?
1 of National Lottery funding invested into major sporting events, an average of ? 4. 90 of additional direct economic impact is generated for the host city and region In total, cycling contributes ? 2. 9 billion to UK economy, this equates to ? 230 per cyclist per annum Regular cyclists take one sick-day less per year, which saves the economy ? 128 million per year in absenteeism In 2010 the London Marathon generated ? 110. 1m of economic activity in the UK, and a further ? 31.
7m via spending in the capital by marathon runners, spectators, organisers and visitors. Analysis of Kickz programme in Elthorne Park (North London) found that every ? 1 invested in the programme generated ? 7 of value for the state and local community, largely by reducing youth and gang violence. The 2011 British Grand Prix contributed an estimated ? 14 million to Treasury coffers through VAT on ticket sales. In 2008 central government made a net surplus of ? 5. 7 billion from sport. For every ? 1 the Government contributes to sport, ?
5 is taken in tax Physical activity reduces the risk of death from cardiovascular disease by more than 50% Middle-aged women who do less than one hour of exercise per week are twice as likely to die from cardiovascular disease and 29% more likely to die from cancer than physically active women of the same age By 2025 it is estimated that 47% of men and 36% of women will be obese# in 2009-2010 the 201,800 criminal offences committed by young people (aged between ten and 17 years old) cost the country between ? 8. 5 billion and ?
11 billion Not only does the above demonstrate that sport is a great source income for the UK, it shows benefit impact is has on the health of the country helping to reduce NHS costs, reduce lost cost of sickness/absence at work and it’s also helps to combat a number of anti-social behaviours Participation routes could be improved in the following ways Reconsider free swimming options for under 16s and over 60s this scheme worked significantly well but was unfortunately funding was withdrawn.
Arrange football in the community sessions which may be funded to allow those from low income families to participate in regular sporting activities. Boroughs with high ethnic minority groups may consider offering women and children female only sessions possibly for all activities. Develop back to work schemes for unemployed persons in local leisure centres and offer options for reduced membership fees • • Develop voluntary roles to assist with 2012 Olympic programmes where unemployed persons can become involved with the schemes Develop summer splash schemes and grow youth projects.
Education is imperative to grow sporting participation and ensure that it is delivers the message to people from a young age. If the message is delivered successfully it will ensure sporting disciplines are applied early in life and people would reap the benefits and not need to be persuaded or re-educated later in life therefore, participation a natural part of daily life rather than a chaos.
References http://www. sportandrecreation. org. uk – accessed 10. 1.13 09:14 Department of Culture of Media and Sport, (2002) Game Plan: a strategy for delivering government’s sport and physical activity objectives London: Cabinet Office. Torkildsen . G (2005) Leisure and recreation Management. Routledge . New York Http//www. sportsdevelopment. info/index. php? option=com_content&view – accessed 10. 1. 13 09:14 http://www. gll. org/about us /accessed 10. 01. 13 16:18 http://www. virginactive. co. uk – accessed 04. 01. 11 19:17 www. sportdevelopment. info/index. php? option=com -Accessed 03. 01. 13 13:26. Gibson, Ashley Kristin (2007).
The influence of sports magazines and thin-ideal images on the body image of Division IA female athletes Elizabeth Daniels (2009). “Sex Objects, Athletes, and Sexy Athletes”. Journal of adolescent research Mintel (2003) Health and Fitness Clubs K. R. Fox and M. Hillsdon (2007), Physical activity and obesity, obesity reviews. Department of Health, Physical Activity, Health Improvement and Prevention , At Least Five a Week: Evidence on the Impact of Physical Activity and its Relationship to Health. A Report from the Chief Medical Office. Department of Health: London, 2004.