£260m a year wasted on home fitness equipment

Discarded Gym equipmentIn a bid to lose weight or tone up, UK adults spent more than £1billion over the last five years on home health and fitness equipment they rarely, if ever, use, according to new research from Nuffield Health, the UK’s largest healthcare charity.

Three quarters of adults have bought at least one piece of equipment, ranging from treadmills to trampolines, so they can pursue health or fitness goals in the comfort of their own home.

However, just 21 per cent of these people use the equipment regularly and double that (41 per cent) admit to using it briefly when they first buy it, if at all, and then giving up.

The research suggests that the average home exerciser spends £235 on equipment that doesn’t get results, with each person owning four items on average.

Fewer than a third (31 per cent) of the 2,000 UK adults surveyed achieved what they set out to and the most common reasons for ditching home health and fitness routines were ‘not seeing benefits’ (39 per cent) and ‘preferring to use the equipment in the gym’ (12 per cent).

In fact one in 10 people (eight per cent) hurt themselves using the equipment and had to stop.

The survey revealed there are around 82 million items of health and fitness equipment currently in households across the UK, with exercise bikes, weights and workout DVDs proving most popular.

Much equipment that doesn’t get used ends up cluttering up attics and spare rooms (60 per cent), while some ends up being put to other uses, including drying washing (6 per cent).

One respondent reported having to put up with a disused cross trainer in their dining room because it is too heavy to move.

The three most common reasons for buying equipment were to lose weight (47 per cent), to get fitter and healthier (45 per cent) and as an alternative to going to the gym (42 per cent). More than one in 10 (11 per cent) admitted to buying items because they got caught up in a fitness trend

Source: Nuffield Health

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