Walking, yoga, cycling… What are the favorite sports of the French?

What are the sports preferences of the French in recent years? Are they rigorous in their practice, considered as one of the major factors in the prevention of the main chronic pathologies (cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, etc.)? A survey conducted by INSEE* draws a portrait of these athletes, men or women, and especially of the most popular sports in the country. More specifically, it traces all the physical and sporting activities practiced over the last twelve months in 2020 (excluding confinements), whether this practice is regular or occasional, and more or less physically intense. Its results are first and foremost part of good news: over the past few decades, the practice of physical and sports activities (PSA) has become highly democratized: 16 million people hold a sports license in 2020, compared to 2 million in 1950. Concretely, in 2020, 65% of people aged 15 or over can commonly be described as athletic, because they had practiced at least 52 sessions of physical and sporting activity during the year.

It also turns out that 54% of French people practice frequent physical or sporting activity (twice a week or more) and 11% on a weekly basis. INSEE points out that ” certain leisure or well-being activities located on the periphery of the physical and sporting sphere, such as walking, swimming or relaxation, are carried out by a wide audience: regular and occasional sports people, but also people who do not practice no other. “. But for the more seasoned, what are the most practiced sports? Activities that do not require too specific or expensive equipment and that can be practiced outside any structure are popular: 34% of people aged 15 or over regularly practice gymnastics, dance or fitness (weight training, cardio training which brings together fitness activities involving the heart muscle and yoga), 25% walking, running or athletics, 18% cycling or sliding sports. Less frequent activities, 9% practice a racket or precision sport, an aquatic and nautical activity, or a team sport, and 3% a combat sport.

Health, relaxation, nature, sports performance… What are the motivations for practicing a sport?

To note that ” joggingbodybuilding and mountain biking are mainly practiced by men, while fitness walking has more women among its followers. “, indicate the authors of the study. As for the place itself, natural environments are largely invested since 76% of practitioners carry out at least one of their activities there, far ahead of sports facilities (61%), home (52%) or outdoor space. urban (43%). Still, the French are not in the same boat with regard to the regular practice of sport. It turns out that in 2020, 71% of men practice regularly, compared to 60% of women, and that twice as many men as women take part in sports competitions or events. And if regular physical or sports activity decreases with age (83% of 15-24 year olds practice it every week, compared to 70% of 25-49 year olds, 61% of 50-64 year olds and 50% of 65 year olds or more), it decreases sharply between the ages of 25 and 35 for women before increasing again between 35 and 45 years.

Also to discover: True / False: 8 preconceived ideas about sport to deconstruct

Mainly in question according to the authors, “ the presence of young children at home which could explain this decrease which is not observed in men whose regular practice of sport varies little between 30 and 45 years of age. In addition, family transmission also plays an important role because the study reveals that more assiduous practitioners more often had one or more sports parents during their childhood or adolescence. Added to this is the fact that good health often goes hand in hand with regular physical activity: the proportion of practitioners declaring themselves to be in good or very good health increases with regular practice (from 43% of non-athletes to 61 % of holiday or occasional sportspeople and 76% of frequent sportspeople), while the prevalence of overweight and obesity decreased (from 40% of non-sportspeople to 37% of occasional sportspeople and 30% of frequent sportspeople). Moreover, it is health, lifestyle, well-being and relaxation that come first among the motivations cited by athletes, followed by pleasure and amusement and contact with nature and physical expenditure itself.

If the motivations are diverse and varied according to the responses of the people questioned (half of the respondents declared six reasons or more), it is however possible to draw four standard profiles according to INSEE. In the first place, sports enthusiasts for pleasure (for interaction with nature and meeting relatives) who seem older on average and prefer walking activities and people doing sports above all to take care of their health (maintenance and physical aspect) whose most invested universe is that of form and gymnastics and this frequently alone. Next comes the hard core of athletes, namely the archetype of the athlete in the collective imagination, those who practice very intensely (for competition, the improvement of personal performance and physical expenditure) and two-thirds of whom are affiliated with a club and finally the more “occasional” sportsmen who happen to be more often attracted by the taste for adventure and risk. For these people, pleasure and amusement and contact with nature seem to be the main motives evoked.

*The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies

We would like to give thanks to the author of this write-up for this amazing web content

Walking, yoga, cycling… What are the favorite sports of the French?

Check out our social media accounts as well as other related pageshttps://nimblespirit.com/related-pages/