Lauren McGuire is a fourth year Professional Communication student at Ryerson University with a background in athletic development and community relations. One of Lauren’s greatest pastimes and passions is sports and staying physically active. During her time at Ryerson, she has made it a priority to align her work to relevant topics of sport, whether that be gender issues in the sports industry, sport accessibility, or her most recent research into the impact of COVID-19 on recreational sport and fitness. Post-graduation, Lauren has made it her goal to pursue a career within a sports and athletics environment with the hope to work in either strategic relations or community development. Somewhere down the line, she also hopes to get into coaching and encourage females to get involved in sports!
The purpose of this research study is to gain insight into how recreational sport and exercise has been affected as a consequence of COVID-19. There is currently a gap in research relating to lifestyle changes and COVID-19 due to the recent nature of the pandemic that this study works to address. While taking a mixed methods approach, the study analyzes both interview and survey results relating to whether the pandemic has caused a mindset shift on being physically active, examining at home exercise verses in-facility, and the impact that the limited access to recreational sport and fitness activities/facilities has had on mental and physical health. The results of the study found that a lack of motivation and accessibility were common factors in the reasoning behind participants stating that their mindset had shifted in regards to the importance of physical activity and at-home exercise programming being less effective. Overall the most conclusive finding that aligns with my original hypothesis was that societies overall mental health and physical wellbeing has been negatively affected due to COVID-19 restrictions on recreational sport and fitness.
health; sports; fitness; COVID-19; mental health, recreation