10 Most Popular Workouts In America

Americans have a diverse range of preferences when it comes to staying active. While some find solace in the climate-controlled confines of a gym, many others are drawn to the natural beauty of the outdoors. In a 2023 survey conducted by Statista Consumer Insights, we discovered some fascinating insights into the exercise habits of sporty Americans.

Hiking

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 35%

Hiking has emerged as America’s favorite exercise, with over a third of sports enthusiasts lacing up for treks through nature. It’s easy to see why. Hiking elevates your heart rate, strengthening your cardiovascular system and stamina. Whether you choose a gentle stroll or a challenging climb, your legs, core, and glutes will get a workout navigating uneven terrain. Spending time in nature is a proven stress reducer that promotes mental well-being. So, ditch the gym and explore the beauty of America, one trail at a time.

Fitness/Aerobics/Cardio

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 34%

Fitness, aerobics, and cardio all refer to exercise that keeps your heart rate up and elevated for a sustained period. This exercise improves cardiovascular health, strengthens your lungs, and boosts your fitness. Activities like brisk walking, running, swimming, and dancing all fall under this category. Around 34% of Americans regularly participate in these cardio exercises.

Basketball

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 29%

Beyond its exciting gameplay, basketball is a stellar fitness activity. This fast-paced team sport elevates your heart rate, builds muscle, and improves agility through running, jumping, and quick movements. While participation lags behind viewership, basketball’s social aspects, accessibility (need a ball and a hoop!), and pure fun make it a fantastic way to get fit. So, lace up and shoot some hoops for healthy exercise and enjoyment.

Hunting/Fishing

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 26%

Though rooted in tradition, hunting and fishing offer surprising exercise benefits. Tracking prey or casting lines involves significant walking, sometimes in rugged terrain. These activities strengthen muscles for carrying gear, maneuvering through nature, and reeling in a catch. While participation is lower than that of other sports (around 26% in the US), hunting and fishing can effectively combine physical activity with connecting to the outdoors.

Swimming/Diving

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 26%

Swimming and diving offer a refreshing and low-impact way to exercise. Swimming utilizes your entire body, promoting muscle strength, cardiovascular health, and flexibility. It’s a fantastic option for people of all ages and fitness levels. Diving, on the other hand, adds an element of skill and thrills to aquatic activities. Despite the appeal of cool water on a hot day, participation in swimming and diving falls in line with hunting and fishing. An estimated 26% of Americans regularly engage in swimming or diving.

Dancing

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 26%

Dancing is a fun, accessible workout disguised as a good time. From salsa’s fast pace to the waltz’s graceful turns, various styles elevate your heart rate, improve cardio health, and boost stamina. It doesn’t stop there – dancing strengthens your core, increases flexibility, and challenges your brain-body coordination. Even though just around a quarter of Americans get moving regularly, dance is a fantastic way to combine exercise with fun, whether you groove on your own or with friends.

American (Flag) Football

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 25%

American football is more than just America’s favorite game; it’s a surprisingly demanding workout. This high-contact sport combines intense bursts of speed with strategic positioning and moments of strength. Running plays, dodging tackles, and throwing the spiral elevate your heart rate and can improve cardiovascular health. Additionally, linemen on both sides of the ball build significant strength and muscle endurance to overpower opponents. While participation falls behind viewership at roughly 25% in the US, football offers a unique blend of power, agility, and strategy that keeps you moving for the entire game.

Cycling

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 25%

Hit the road (or the trail) for a fun and healthy workout with cycling. This low-impact exercise strengthens your legs, core, and heart. Regular cycling aids in weight loss and helps maintain healthy body weight. Cruise flat paths or challenge yourself with hills, tailoring the intensity to your fitness level. Unlike high-impact activities, cycling is gentle on your joints, making it accessible for many. Cycling outdoors can reduce stress, boost mood, and enhance mental clarity. While only around 25% of Americans cycle regularly, it’s a fantastic way to get fit and enjoy the outdoors, so saddle up and give it a try.

Running/Jogging

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 21%

Running and jogging are aerobic exercises with positive health benefits like lowered blood pressure and weight loss. All you need are some good shoes to hit the pavement almost anywhere. Whether you choose a quick jog or a long run, your heart will thank you. Running strengthens your cardiovascular system, improves endurance, and burns calories efficiently, aiding in weight management. Plus, it’s a mood booster. Exercise releases endorphins that combat stress. Though only about 21% of Americans run regularly, it’s a convenient and effective way to elevate your fitness and well-being.

Baseball/Softball

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Percentage of Americans who engage in this exercise/sport – 20%

Baseball and softball, often referred to as America’s pastime, offer more than just strategy and peanuts. These bat-and-ball games provide a surprising workout that incorporates various physical skills. Running the bases, fielding grounders, and chasing fly balls elevate your heart rate for a cardio boost. Throwing, swinging, and squatting build muscle in your arms, core, and legs. Reacting to plays, tracking balls, and throwing accurately hone your agility and coordination. While participation sits around 20% in the US, baseball and softball offer a fun way to get active and combine exercise with strategy on the diamond.

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