Home » The digitization of sports services pushes Italians to practice more sports and to be less sedentary.

The digitization of sports services pushes Italians to practice more sports and to be less sedentary.

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The digitization of sports services pushes Italians to practice more sports and to be less sedentary.

Digitization in sport will increasingly contribute to revenues and the recovery of the sector, as well as giving a great boost to the reduction of sedentary lifestyle, with benefits in terms of physical and mental health. However, the gap to be bridged between the southern regions compared to northern Italy remains large.

This is what emerges from the data of Sportclubby – the main platform for booking sports and wellness, used by over 1 million sportsmen and about 1000 structures throughout Italy – for the Valore Sport Observatory, created by The European House Ambrosetti, in collaboration with CONI, the Institute for Sports Credit, Sport and Health, Decathlon, FitActive, Noberasco and Sportium.

According to data from Sportclubby’s Sport Trend 2023 report, which analyzed over 22 million bookings in recent years, in 2023 sporting activity will be practiced for fun and to achieve or maintain the desired physical shape. In fact, sport is always an excellent ally for one’s psychophysical well-being and there are many reasons for training: fewer health problems connected to static activity (62%), help against anxiety, stress and depression (54%), favor opportunities for socializing (26 %) increase positive energy useful for career and private life (23%).

To meet the need for access to sports activities in a practical and fast way, the digitization of sports services is increasingly important because it can offer stable revenues to club, gym and facility managers which are increasingly booked online by regular and occasional sportsmen. According to the statistics of the Sportclubby Observatory, the rate of propensity to digitize services related to sports facilities at a territorial level is still different between Northern and Southern Italy. Among the regions with the highest number of sports facilities registered on the aggregation platform – which allows registered users to book pitches, gyms and lessons online – Piedmont stands out in 1st place with 22.1% of the total facilities active (840 in Italy in November 2022), followed by Lombardy (12.1%) and Emilia-Romagna (10.8%). Calabria closes the ranking, with only 2 active lifts within the app, and Molise with only one lift.

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Digitizing is therefore essential to keep up with the times, offer a competitive service on the market and help reduce sedentary lifestyles. According to recent data from the Valore Sport Observatory, Italians are still too sedentary compared to the average of OECD countries (34.7%).

The main reason why almost 40% of Italians in 2022 limited their physical activity is essentially linked to lack of time. In particular, on average 1 manager or self-employed person out of 2, especially those with a higher spending capacity (58%), declares that they do not have time to devote to sports. And the sedentary rate reaches up to 60% in the age group between 40 and 54 years. Post pandemic, however, there was a positive trend reversal with a significant increase in the propensity of Italians to want to improve their physical shape, which helped to reduce the trend relating to a sedentary lifestyle by over 10% compared to the last survey. Main reason: desire to adopt a healthier lifestyle for one’s physical and psychological well-being (48% of respondents).

“In recent years we have observed a positive correlation between the sports digitization rate of some regions and the increase in bookings. Where it is possible to access the services of one’s center from a smartphone, training frequency is greater, with positive effects on people’s health and on sector revenues at a local level. For example, in regions such as Piedmont, where Sportclubby is widespread, real “multi-sport districts” are emerging, in which people tend to practice different disciplines, because they are facilitated by a homogeneous search, registration and payment process and simpler”, comments Stefano De Amici, CPO and co-founder of Sportclubby.

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