sustainability-logo

Journal Browser

Journal Browser

Sustainable Development and Management in Sports and Fitness Services during COVID-19 Pandemic

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Health, Well-Being and Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2022) | Viewed by 22633

Special Issue Editors


E-Mail Website
Chief Guest Editor
Lee Shau Kee School of Business and Administration, Hong Kong Metropolitan University, Hong Kong
Interests: sport business; sport consumer behavior

E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
Department of Kinesiology, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu City 30014, Taiwan
Interests: sport management; sport marketing; sport facility management

E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
ERICA Campus, Hanyang University, Ansan 15588, Gyeonggi-do, Korea
Interests: sport management; sport marketing

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Due to the growing awareness of health and wellness, the global sport and fitness market was growing at a very steady pace before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, reaching approximately USD 96.7 billion with over 205,000 sport and fitness clubs and over 64 million members across the globe in 2019 (International Health Racquet and Sportsclub Association, 2020). Moreover, new technologies, such as fitness trackers and fitness apps, have been integrated into sport and fitness services to enhance customer experience and facilitate the development of the sport and fitness industry. Although the sport and fitness industry has been among the hardest hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, it has also accelerated the digitization of sport and fitness services. Many proactive and innovative sport and fitness operators have embraced virtual–physical hybrid models of increasing online presence, such as online training classes or live broadcastings, to activate and retain customers who prefer the flexibility of virtual options amid the pandemic (Laber, 2021). The new business models of sport and fitness services have urged the need to explore sustainable development and management to adapt to the radical change in sport and fitness services caused by the COVID-19 pandemic (León-Quismondo et al., 2020).

In summary, the scope of this Special Issue, “Sustainable Development and Management of Sport and Fitness Services during COVID-19 Pandemic”, is to address emerging issues relevant to the changes, challenges, and opportunities in the sport and fitness industry amid the COVID-19 pandemic in order to increase customer engagement and improve long-term stability, profitability and sustainability. This Special Issue seeks to contribute to a better theoretical and practical understanding of the impact of COVID-19 on sport and fitness services. Potential topics include, but are not limited to, the following aspects:

  • Impact of COVID-19 on sport and fitness services;
  • Sustainable practices in sport and fitness services;
  • Sustainable business models of sport and fitness services;
  • Digitization and innovations in sport and fitness services;
  • Servicescape and service quality of sport and fitness services;
  • Customer experience and satisfaction;
  • Customer engagement and loyalty;
  • Human resource management in sport and fitness services;
  • Facility management for sport and fitness services;
  • Importance–performance analysis on sport and fitness services.

References:

International Health Racquet and Sportsclub Association. (2020). The IHRSA Global Report 2020.

Laber, M. (2021). Getting back in shape: Fitness industry's path to COVID recovery in 2021 [White paper]. Available online: https://www.thinkbrg.com/insights/publications/fitness-industry-covid-recovery/ (Accessed on 30 November 2021)

León-Quismondo, J., García-Unanue, J., & Burillo, P. (2020). Best Practices for Fitness Center Business Sustainability: A Qualitative Vision. Sustainability, 12(12), 5067. Doi: 10.3390/su12125067

Dr. Weisheng Chiu
Prof. Dr. Yu Huang
Dr. Sang-Back Nam
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • sport and fitness services
  • COVID-19 pandemic
  • innovations
  • technology
  • digitization
  • service quality
  • customer loyalty
  • satisfaction

Published Papers (7 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

19 pages, 724 KiB  
Article
The Effect of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Sports Betting Tipsters as Professional Bettors: A Qualitative Interview Study
by Arif Yüce, Sevda Gökce Yüce, Hakan Katırcı, Volkan Aydoğdu, Weisheng Chiu and Mark D. Griffiths
Sustainability 2023, 15(9), 7729; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15097729 - 8 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2491
Abstract
Although the COVID-19 pandemic impacted individuals who bet on sports, sports betting tipsters (SBTs; i.e., individuals who provide professional tips on the outcome of sporting events) were arguably among the most affected groups. Consequently, the aim of the present study was to explore [...] Read more.
Although the COVID-19 pandemic impacted individuals who bet on sports, sports betting tipsters (SBTs; i.e., individuals who provide professional tips on the outcome of sporting events) were arguably among the most affected groups. Consequently, the aim of the present study was to explore how SBTs in Turkey were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including alternate forms of gambling engagement (e.g., e-sports betting). Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 85 SBTs aged between 20 and 48 years. The data were analyzed using thematic analysis to identify common themes. Based on the qualitative analysis, four themes emerged: (i) the meaning and role of sports betting, (ii) the effects of the pandemic on life and sports betting, (iii) comparing e-sports betting vs. traditional sports betting, and (iv) possible sports betting behavior if the pandemic continues. SBTs reported experiencing psychological distress as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic’s cancellation of sporting events. More specifically, SBTs reported a sense of emptiness because of the lack of sports betting. Furthermore, SBT reported suffering a loss of income and turning to e-sports betting during the pandemic. However, the majority of SBTs did not find betting on e-sports as exciting as traditional betting but reported they would continue to engage in e-sports betting if traditional sports betting was not available. The findings of this study can contribute to a better understanding of the impact of SBTs on individuals and further provide practical implications for policymakers to promote a safe, sustainable, and long-term growth of the sports betting industry in Turkey. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

14 pages, 289 KiB  
Article
Potential Baseball Fan Engagement: The Determinants of a New Television Audience in the Chinese Professional Baseball League during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Jyh-How Huang, Chung-Yi Lu and Yu-Chia Hsu
Sustainability 2023, 15(4), 3302; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15043302 - 10 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1844
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a dramatic increase in baseball viewership, thereby providing an opportunity to comprehensively explore the determinants of the new audience. To this end, we analyze the preferences of the Taiwanese audience in 2019 and 2020, both before and [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a dramatic increase in baseball viewership, thereby providing an opportunity to comprehensively explore the determinants of the new audience. To this end, we analyze the preferences of the Taiwanese audience in 2019 and 2020, both before and after the COVID-19 outbreak, through TV ratings based on the effect of outcome uncertainty, tournament factors, consumer availability, and game quality. The empirical findings show that the behavior of the small-scale Chinese Professional Baseball League (CPBL) sports television viewing market differs from that of large-scale markets such as Major League Baseball. Additionally, the effect of the outcome uncertainty of the game is inconsistent before and after the COVID-19 pandemic. New audiences, unlike existing audiences, have been affected by team quality and consumer availability that are statistically significant, but tournament factors are not significant. This study provides the first empirical analysis of the factors driving TV ratings of CPBL games as well as the impact before and after the COVID-19 outbreak as a contribution to filling the gap in sports communication research. The observations can be used by strategic departments of professional teams for their marketing target, to identify potential fans, and to direct their marketing resources towards sustaining or even growing during the pandemic events. Full article
19 pages, 742 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Issues in Fitness Centers through News Articles before and after the COVID-19 Pandemic in South Korea: Applying Big Data Analysis
by Miyoung Roh, Youngchyul Choi and Haewon Park
Sustainability 2023, 15(3), 2660; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15032660 - 1 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2650
Abstract
This study aimed to identify major topics and trends of media reports in news articles related to fitness centers before and after COVID-19 using big data analysis and to suggest future improvements. We collected 20,528 news articles from 2018 to 2019 (pre-COVID-19) and [...] Read more.
This study aimed to identify major topics and trends of media reports in news articles related to fitness centers before and after COVID-19 using big data analysis and to suggest future improvements. We collected 20,528 news articles from 2018 to 2019 (pre-COVID-19) and 20,264 news articles from 2020 to 2021 (post-COVID-19) and conducted frequency analysis, topic modeling, and sentiment analysis. The top keywords related to fitness centers were fitness, health, healthcare, and center both before and after COVID-19, but after the outbreak of COVID-19, new keywords emerged, such as digital, COVID-19, indoor, confirmed, platform, and mobile. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, four topics were extracted: COVID-19 and Exercise, Digital Smart Health Care, Health and Beauty, and Indoor Sports Facilities and Quarantine. Sentiment analysis showed that the frequency of negative words increased by approximately three times since the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to COVID-19, the top keywords of the negative data in order were infection, virus, disease, and limit. Based on the identified major issues and trends related to the fitness industry, these results can be used as foundational data for the future planning and policy development of the fitness industry. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

16 pages, 1599 KiB  
Article
Effects of a Telehealth Stretching Exercise Program on Pain, Sleep, Depression, and Functionality of Women with Fibromyalgia during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Randomized Clinical Trial
by Bruna Ornelas da Costa, Luana Siqueira Andrade, Cíntia Ehlers Botton and Cristine Lima Alberton
Sustainability 2023, 15(3), 2604; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15032604 - 1 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3081
Abstract
The purpose of the research was to verify the effects of a supervised telehealth stretching exercise program on pain, sleep, depression, and functionality of women with fibromyalgia during the COVID-19 pandemic. This randomized clinical trial comprised 28 participants allocated into 2 groups. The [...] Read more.
The purpose of the research was to verify the effects of a supervised telehealth stretching exercise program on pain, sleep, depression, and functionality of women with fibromyalgia during the COVID-19 pandemic. This randomized clinical trial comprised 28 participants allocated into 2 groups. The experimental group (EG; n = 13; 49.9 ± 8.0 years) received a stretching exercise program with remote supervision for 12 weeks; the active control group (CG; n = 15; 47.0 ± 6.5 years) received counseling for stretching via an exercise guide and videos to be performed without supervision for 12 weeks. The following outcomes were assessed online: pain index, sleep quality, symptom severity, the impact of fibromyalgia on daily activities, depressive symptoms, pain intensity at rest and after movement, and flexibility. Data analysis was performed by intention to treat (ITT) and per protocol (PP) using generalized estimating equations (α = 0.05). Significant improvements were observed post-intervention for all outcomes in both groups, except for the flexibility by ITT (p = 0.136) and depressive symptoms by PP analysis (p = 0.065). In addition, the impact of fibromyalgia on daily activities presented better responses for EG than CG (ITT: p = 0.027). It was concluded that the telehealth stretching program, supervised or not, was effective in promoting the improvement in the main symptoms in women with fibromyalgia. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

22 pages, 1398 KiB  
Article
Investigating Factors Affecting Behavioral Intention among Gym-Goers to Visit Fitness Centers during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Integrating Physical Activity Maintenance Theory and Social Cognitive Theory
by Ardvin Kester S. Ong, Yogi Tri Prasetyo, Godwin M. Bagon, Christian Hope S. Dadulo, Nathaniel O. Hortillosa, Morrissey A. Mercado, Thanatorn Chuenyindee, Reny Nadlifatin and Satria Fadil Persada
Sustainability 2022, 14(19), 12020; https://doi.org/10.3390/su141912020 - 23 Sep 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 5035
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to the closure of many fitness centers and has significantly affected the behavioral intentions of gym-goers. This study aimed to determine factors affecting the behavioral intentions of gym-goers regarding fitness centers during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to the closure of many fitness centers and has significantly affected the behavioral intentions of gym-goers. This study aimed to determine factors affecting the behavioral intentions of gym-goers regarding fitness centers during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines by utilizing the Physical Activity Maintenance Theory within the framework of Social Cognitive Theory. A total of 1048 gym-goers voluntarily answered an online, self-administered survey comprising 68 questions. Structural Equation Modeling indicated that physical activity maintenance through understanding COVID-19 and self-motivation had the highest significant effect on behavioral intentions. Interestingly, life stress was found to have a significant negative direct effect on physical activity maintenance. The current study is one of the first to have analyzed factors affecting the behavioral intentions of gym-goers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Finally, the application of Physical Activity Maintenance Theory and Social Cognitive Theory in this study provided accurate predictors of behavioral intention. As a result, this integrated model could serve as a theoretical foundation that could be applied and extended to assess behavioral intentions among gym-goers during the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

12 pages, 403 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Sustainable Management Strategies of Sports Apparel Brands on Brand Reliability and Purchase Intention through Single Person Media during COVID-19 Pandemic: A Path Analysis
by Taerin Chung, Kwang-Yong Lee and Uk Kim
Sustainability 2022, 14(12), 7076; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14127076 - 9 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2721
Abstract
Recently, a variety of efforts have been taken to convey sustainable management strategies of sports apparel brands through single-person media. However, there is a lack of theoretical information on the path that leads these corporate marketing activities to brand reliability and purchase intention [...] Read more.
Recently, a variety of efforts have been taken to convey sustainable management strategies of sports apparel brands through single-person media. However, there is a lack of theoretical information on the path that leads these corporate marketing activities to brand reliability and purchase intention of consumers. Therefore, this study aims to analyze the path through which the sustainable management strategy established by a sports apparel brand affects the brand awareness and reliability, as well as the purchase intention of consumers when experiencing this strategy through single-person media. The results are summarized as follows: Firstly, the sustainable management strategies of a sports apparel brand carried out through single-person media had statistically significant positive impacts on the benevolence reliability perceived by single-person media viewers. Secondly, benevolence also had a statistically significant positive impact on the consumers’ purchase intention. It is expected that the results of this study will serve as an important resource for the methods of utilizing sustainable management strategies among sports apparel brands in the future. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

12 pages, 731 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Crisis Management for Sustainable Development of Fitness Center during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Tae-Seung Park and Jae-Yoon Kwon
Sustainability 2022, 14(4), 2451; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14042451 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3460
Abstract
The purpose of this research was to verify the importance and performance of sustainable crisis management in Korean fitness centers using Importance-Performance Analysis (IPA). For this study, 304 fitness center executives and managers in Seoul and Gyeonggi region were selected from 21 March [...] Read more.
The purpose of this research was to verify the importance and performance of sustainable crisis management in Korean fitness centers using Importance-Performance Analysis (IPA). For this study, 304 fitness center executives and managers in Seoul and Gyeonggi region were selected from 21 March to 17 May 2020. Frequency analysis was performed using SPSS 24.0, and exploratory factor analysis was conducted to verify the validity and reliability. Priority analysis and IPA analysis were performed to compare the mean values, and the following results were obtained. In the first quadrant, there were six attributes besides keeping social distancing between employees and customers. In the second quadrant, there were four attributes in addition to regular disinfection of the gymnasium. In the third quadrant, there were six attributes besides maintain clean furniture. Third, there were six attributes other than maintaining clean furniture in the third quadrant. Lastly, in the fourth quadrant, there were three attributes in addition to the restriction of face-to-face meetings. The conclusion was as follows. First, equip supplies for the prevention of COVID-19, keep social distance, and check government support policies. Second, analyze economic support policies, and research their application methods. Third, prepare various non-face-to-face communication methods and Untact (noncontact) marketing strategies. Fourth, make a checklist for factors with relatively little importance. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop