According to a survey from Multisport Research that compares findings from a survey conducted in April and June last year to the responses on a survey in January, 2021, athletes haven’t lost their motivation to race. Instead, most are – no surprises here – extremely eager to return to racing soon. The survey findings are based on information from 2,616 athletes from all over the world.
Financial worries decrease
Other survey outcomes indicate that while people worried less in June, 2020 compared to April, 2020 – when the virus just hit – by January, 2021 people are just as worried as they were in the very beginning of 2020. Financial concerns, on the other hand, have decreased over the last few months, which is a good sign.
Even though there haven’t been many events and the situation for the near future is still uncertain, multisport athletes find it important to stick to their training regime as much as they usually would, with 81 percent considering it important to maintain a training regime for event goals for this year, indicating that many people still hope for races in 2021. The survey found that 82 percent of the people expect to race again sometime this year and 68 percent trust they will be able to race again in spring or summer of 2021.
Mental and physical health
It’s definitely not just racing that is motivating athletes to keep active – 98 percent of the respondents find training important for both their mental and physical health.
What kept us motivated during lockdowns were virtual events. During the lockdown 60 percent of people took part in a virtual run, while 46 percent preferred the bike for virtual racing.
Traveling for races
While many triathletes are used to traveling to races, it turns out that 32 percent of people would prefer not to travel more than 30 miles for a race this year. 35 percent of the people wouldn’t travel more than 100 miles for an event, and international travel is only considered an option to 10 percent of respondents.
What might have come as a surprise to some is that 70 percent of people would tolerate higher prices to keep races on the calendar in 2021. The other 30 percent are unsure or unwilling to accept higher registration fees.
“Encouraging to see a clear willingness from athletes”
“These remain challenging times with much uncertainty for the industry. As a backdrop, it is though encouraging to see a clear willingness from athletes to return to racing,” says Gary Goethenbaugh, Managing Director at MultiSport Research.
“Not surprisingly, there is still caution in the air as the pandemic shows no sign of abating,” he continues. “Yet, there is a sense that athletes are keen to get back to racing as soon as restrictions allow. This is in order to support local events, and in-turn get back to the fun and euphoria that racing can provide”.