Australians are more physically active, according to new survey results.
The AusPlay revealed a three per cent increase in activity on 2016 figures.
The University of Wollongong recreation centre has a wide range of activities and classes, and UniActive Operations and Programs Coordinator Rachael Ayre, saidthe centre had seen a steady, but not dramatic, membership growth.
“I do think that a lot of the reason that people come to a gym, and a facility like ours, is that we offer a big range of group fitness classes at UniActive,” Ms Ayre said.
“So, we have over 70 classes on the timetable, with lots of variety within that 70 classes.
“And the statistics show us that one of the biggest tools in retaining members at a gym is when they come and do some form of organised activity, as opposed to just coming and doing something on your own.”
The SportAus survey found the main reasons people stopped participating in this form of exercise were a lack of time, money and/or transport.
UOW staff member Sean Walter said half an hour of activity is better than nothing and rests your brain.
“I generally try to get to the gym four times a week, usually just for my lunch hour,” Mr Walter said.
“And I come just to try and keep fit, plus I think it helps with any stress you might have.”
Ms Ayre said she had recently seen a change in the style of fitness classes.
“It was kind of seen as something that you did when you were already fit kind of thing,” Ms Ayre said.
“I think the way we teach our classes has had to adapt and change to be really inclusive, and the style of classes has changed to be more inclusive as well.
“So that there is something for everyone and the removal of that barrier to exercise by everyone feeling more comfortable about coming along to a class hopefully.”
Sport Australia CEO Kate Palmer said lives depend on us moving more.
“It is estimated physical inactivity now contributes to the deaths of 16,000 Australians every year,” Ms Palmer said.
“That’s shocking, it’s almost 14 times the national road toll.
The data for the AusPlay survey was collected through telephone interviews, with a target size of 20,000 adults aged 15 years and over.