The impact of public-health measures to limit the spread of Coronavirus on training behaviours of individuals previously participating in resistance training: A cross-sectional survey study

James Steele, Patroklos Androulakis-Korakakis, Luke Carlson, David Williams, Stuart Phillips, Dave Smith, Brad Schoenfeld, Jeremy Loenneke, Richard Winett, Takashi Abe, Stéphane Dufour, Martino Franchi, Fabio Sarto, Tommy Lundberg, Paulo Gentil, Thue Kvorning, Jürgen Giessing, Milan Sedliak, Fiona Spotswood, Alex LucasJames Fisher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objectives: To determine how the onset of COVID-19, and the associated ‘lockdown’, affected RT behaviours, in addition to motivation, perceived effectiveness, enjoyment, and intent to continue, in those who regularly performed resistance training RT prior to the pandemic. Design: Observational, cross-sectional. Setting: Online surveys in multiple languages (English, Danish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Slovakian, Swedish, and Japanese) distributed across social media platforms and through authors professional and personal networks. Participants: Adults (n = 5389 after data cleaning; median age = 31 years [IQR = 25, 38]), who were previously engaged in RT prior to lockdown (median prior RT experience = 7 years [IQR = 4, 12]). Main outcomes: Self-reported RT behaviours including: continuation of RT during lockdown, location of RT, purchase of specific equipment for RT, method of training (e.g. alone, supervision etc.), full-body or split routine, types of training, repetition ranges, exercise number, set volumes (per exercise and muscle group), weekly frequency of training, perception of effort, whether training was planned/recorded, time of day, and training goals. Secondary outcomes included motivation, perceived effectiveness, enjoyment, and intent to continue RT. Results: A majority of individuals (82.8%) maintained participation in some form of RT during- lockdown. Marginal probabilities from generalised linear models and generalised estimating equations of engaging in certain RT behaviours were largely similar from pre- to during- lockdown (particularly numbers of exercises, sets per exercise or muscle group, and weekly frequencies). There was reduced probability of training in privately owned gyms and increased probability of training at home; greater probability of training using a full-body routine; reduced probability of resistance machines use and increased probability of free weight and bodyweight training; reduced probability of moderate repetition ranges and greater probability of higher repetition ranges; and reduction in the perception of effort experienced during- training. Further, individuals were slightly less likely to plan or record training during- lockdown and many changed their training goals as a result of lockdown. Conclusions: Those engaged in RT prior to lockdown appeared mostly able to maintain these behaviours with only slight adaptations in both the location and types of training performed. However, people employed less effort, and motivation, perceived effectiveness, enjoyment, and likelihood of continuing current training all appeared lower during- lockdown. These results have implications for strategies to maintain engagement in positive health behaviours such as RT during- restrictive pandemic-related public health measures.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSportRxiv
Publication statusSubmitted - Sep 2020

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