Youth Sport Trust responds to latest research from ukactive.

New research from ukactive released today, reveals over half of Brits go to the gym to manage a health condition.

Working off the winter mince pies and jumping back into new fitness routines sees millions of Brits head to the gym this week to start their year in the right way. New research however, shows that motivations run deeper than just getting in shape, as more than half of Brits (55%) say their gym membership is important in helping them to manage a short or long-term health condition, indicating that millions are realising the benefits of exercise to prevent, improve and manage serious health conditions.

In response to the research, Ali Oliver, CEO of the Youth Sport Trust said:

“Today’s research from ukactive revealing half of UK adults visit their local gym to manage a health condition highlights the huge importance of developing healthy habits and an understanding of the role of exercise in physical and mental health. At the Youth Sport Trust, we believe all children and young people should be empowered and encouraged to develop active and healthy lifestyles at an early age so we can capitalise on the unique potential of physical activity to prevent illness and promote positive wellbeing.

We wholeheartedly endorse ukActive’s call for the Government to prioritise people’s wellbeing and support people of all ages to be more active. Currently only 47% of all children and young people in the UK are meeting the UK’s Chief Medical Officers’ guidelines of 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous intensity physical activity each day – and only 43% of parents are even aware of this guideline. The percentage of young people meeting the guideline is the same proportion as 2018-19 - more of the same will not generate the change we need.

We believe improving children and young people’s wellbeing is a national priority. We are proud to work with ukActive and the rest of the UK physical activity and sport sector to make fitness accessible for everyone and encourage more people to look after their health and wellbeing.”


Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive said:

“Our gyms and leisure centres will be busy this month as the nation heads down to their local facility to begin or continue their fitness journey.

Our research is a clear reminder that our facilities are not just locations to build physical fitness but are fundamental places for the population to prioritise their own health and wellbeing as well as managing a range of short and long-term health conditions.

The green shoots of how we seek to improve our poor public health lie in these instinctive public motivations. That’s why it’s so important that any current or future Government makes the link to fitness and leisure facilities and businesses as a solution to many of the public health issues facing the nation today.”

You can read the full ukactive press release here.

The Youth Sport Trust and ukactive are both members of the National Sector Partners Group (NSPG). The NSPG consists of organisations that play a lead representative role across the sport, recreation and physical activity sector. It is composed of the following organisations and networks:

  • Active Partnerships,
  • Local Government Association,
  • The Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity,
  • Sport for Development Coalition
  • Sport and Recreation Alliance,
  • ukactive
  • Youth Sport Trust
Published on 5 January 2024