Survey on the frequency of recreational exercising in Germany 2016-2020

Germans usually opt for exercising several times a month or several times a week, based on this survey. And plenty never do so or prefer to keep their activities to themselves. In any case, gym and sports club memberships, home workouts, various outdoor activities, swimming, jogging and cycling are just a few examples of the ways in which the German population likes to stay fit and active.

Going for a run?

Among those who recently spent money on fitness and health services, most invested in a gym membership – perhaps one of the more typical choices when considering how to integrate regular physical activity in to a schedule. Indeed, cost is one of the considerations influencing the choice of exercise and whether training takes place independently or not. But while the number of people number of joggers sometimes going for a run in Germany has decreased, the number of those never doing so has slightly increased.

Just working out

Exercise trends change with time, of course, but revenue generated by sports facilities in Germany is expected to grow in the 2020s, though slowly. Typically, Germans prefer the following locations for sports or physical activity: at home, in a park or outdoors, on the way between home and school/ work.

Number of people exercising or playing sports in Germany from 2016 to 2020, by frequency

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Release date

November 2020



Survey time period

2016 to 2020

Age group

14 years and older

Special properties

German-speaking population

Method of interview

Computer-assisted personal interviews (CAPI)

Supplementary notes

Base: German-speaking population 14 years and older.

Random samples:
2016: 23,102 respondents, projected to a population of 69.56 million
2017: 23,106 respondents, projected to a population of 70.09 million
2018: 23,086 respondents, projected to a population of 70.45 million
2019: 23,120 respondents, projected to a population of 70.60 million
2020: 23,138 respondents, projected to a population of 70.63 million

The figures refer to the following studies:
2016: VuMA 2017; 2017: VuMA 2018; 2018: VuMA 2019; 2019: VuMA 2020; 2020: VuMA 2021.

You can find further information on the methodology of the study here.

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