New Survey: Majority of U.S. Adults are Less Active During the Winter

(January 2, 2020)

Local park and recreation agencies provide a cure for winter inactivity

Ashburn, Va. (Jan. 2, 2020) — The large majority (86 percent) of U.S. adults say their physical activity level changes during the winter, according to a newly released National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) poll. More than half (58 percent) are less active, while slightly more than a quarter (27 percent) are more active. Furthermore, people who live in the Northeast, Midwest and South are less active during the winter months than people who live in the West.

Local park and recreation agencies provide a variety of indoor and outdoor options to beat winter inactivity, including:

  • Recreation Centers (with gyms and fitness centers)
  • Martial Arts
  • Aquatics
  • Fitness Enhancement Classes
  • Ice Rinks
  • Trails for Walking, Hiking, Running and/or Biking

“Local parks and recreation centers offer many fun options for people seeking to increase their physical activity level at any time during the year,” said Kevin Roth, NRPA’s vice president of professional development, research and technology. “There are countless free and low-cost park and recreation-sponsored wellness activities, providing something to everyone.”           

This poll is part of NRPA’s Park Pulse, a continuing series of monthly surveys that gauge the public’s opinion on topics relating to parks and recreation. To explore previous Park Pulse survey results, visit

To view the interactive charts with the survey results, click here.

To view the full-size infographic, click here.

To learn more about NRPA, visit   


About the National Recreation and Park Association
The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that all people have access to parks and recreation for health, conservation and social equity. Through its network of 60,000 recreation and park professionals and advocates, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit