The UK Sports Market 2017 - 2022

The UK Sports Market 2017 - 2022


UK sports market is forecast to reach £10.6bn in 2022, up from £9.0bn in 2017. The health & wellness trend combined with consumers transferring spend to leisure activities will ensure the market outperforms non-food retail - up 17.8% over the next five years versus 11.2% for non-food.

Sports clothing & footwear makes up 55.7% of the market in 2017, and is forecast to reach 56.9% in 2022 as continued demand for athleisure ranges supports volume growth. However, inflation will encourage consumers to extend replacement cycles of non-sportswear items, while greater accessibility of sports equipment at the likes of Amazon will limit spend per head among sports amateurs and new participants.

Consumers aged between 16 and 44 have purchased more sportswear in 2017 compared to 2016, with the biggest increase seen among the 16-24s, where penetration grew 4.4ppts to 24.6%. Adoption of healthier lifestyles and greater uptake in cheap gym memberships and group workout activities, combined with the athleisure trend seeing consumers wear sportswear as casualwear has driven shopper penetration.

In 2017 and 2018 price inflation combined with weak consumer confidence and squeezed disposable incomes will cause more subdued volume growth in sports equipment. However, in contrast sales growth in the sportswear and bicycles segments are forecast to outperform, up 6.4% and 8.7% respectively in 2017. The continued shift in consumers prioritizing spend on leisure, entertainment, health and wellness over core retail sectors benefits on-trend sports and activities with limited overhead costs, so sportswear and cycling retailers are uniquely placed to take advantage of this change in spending behavior.

The report The UK Sports Market 2017 - 2022 offers comprehensive insight and analysis of the sportswear, bicycles and sports equipment market, the major players, the main trends, and consumer attitudes. Furthermore, it provides in-depth analysis of the following: the hot issues impacting the market, strategies for success, market sizes and forecasts to 2022, retailer profiles, retailer market shares and consumer shopping habits and spending motivations. Product categories covered in the report include: sports clothing, sports footwear, bicycles, golf, fitness equipment, camping, fishing, balls, skates, water sports, rackets and other sports.

Companies mentioned in this report: Sports Direct, JD Sports, Lululemon, Sweaty Betty, Halfords, Mountain Warehouse, Evans Cycles, Argos, Wiggle, Chain Reaction Cycles, Amazon, Decathlon, Trespass, ASOS, Nike, Adidas, Tesco, Primark, H&M, Topshop, TK Maxx, Matalan, New Look, Under Armour, Asda, Go Outdoors, Cotswold Outdoors, American Golf.


  • The on-going athleisure trend remains pivotal to the growth of the sports market as sportswear makes up over half of the total UK sports market and is expected to consistently outperform the overall sports market over the next five years.
  • The £0.4bn growth forecast in bicycles can be attributed to government’s £1.2bn pledge to make cycling and walking the natural choice for short distances and the ongoing success of the British cycling team driving participation levels. Retailer investment in social engagement and consumer willingness to share goals and achievements will also encourage loyalty to the sport.
  • Sports Direct maintains its position as the leading UK retailer for sports. However, it is under threat after failing to react fast enough to the athleisure trend and the rising consumer demand for more fashionable sportswear. As a result it is losing market share to Amazon, ASOS, H&M and its closest rival JD Sports.
  • The gender spilt of sports shoppers is narrowing as more women buy into the sector. The health and wellness trend combined with greater accessibility of affordable, trend-led sportswear has driven this shift.
  • Online spend on sports will grow by £1.8bn as Amazon and ASOS fuel penetration due to the greater accessibility of third party brands and the grocers and department stores reducing sports ranges instore. In stark contrast is the performance of physical stores where sales will fall 3.4% in the five years to 2022 - led by the sports equipment and bicycles categories.
Reasons to buy
  • Utilise our five-year forecasts to 2022 for individual product categories and refocus your strategy on key areas of high growth.
  • Use our sports retailer acquisitions and mergers tracker to identify what this means for your brand and how market shares have been impacted.
  • Compare our analysis on leading sports retailers; enhance your understanding of their strengths and weaknesses and retailers’ market share growth prospects to gain a competitive advantage.
  • Recognise which consumers to target and how to attract them by utilising our shopper penetration data and understanding what influences their retailer selection and spending motivations.
  • Identify which retailers are maximising social engagement opportunities and building sporting communities to garner customer loyalty, and adapt your strategy to better connect with consumers.

  • The hot issues
    • Market drivers in sports
    • Main issues in sports
    • Strategies for success
  • What people buy
    • Headlines
    • The sector at a glance
      • Table The sector at a glance
    • Sector in context
    • Overall sector size
    • Overall sector growth
    • Category growth
    • Sector size: sportswear
    • Category dynamics: sports clothing
    • Category dynamics: sports footwear
    • Sector size: sports/outdoor equipment
    • Category dynamics: golf
    • Category dynamics: fitness
    • Category dynamics: camping
    • Category dynamics: fishing
    • Category dynamics: balls
    • Category dynamics: skates
    • Category dynamics: watersports
    • Category dynamics: rackets
    • Category dynamics: other
    • Sector size: bicycles
    • Category dynamics: bicycles
    • Spend per head on sports
      • Table Spend per head on sports goods in 2017
    • Spend per head on sportswear
      • Table Spend per head on sportswear in 2017
  • Where people shop
    • Headlines
    • Visited retailers
    • Purchased retailers
    • Shopped retailers
    • Market share
    • Retailer profiles
  • How people shop
    • Headlines
    • Who shops and where they are located
    • What people purchase
    • Who shops and where they are located
    • Online dynamics
    • Channel used by consumers
      • Table Channel usage for sports shoppers by demographic
    • Fulfilment methods used by consumers
      • Table Fulfilment methods used by sports shoppers, by demographic
    • Frequency of shopping
    • Locations used by consumers
  • Why people shop
    • Headlines
    • What's important
    • Sports participation
    • Frequency of participation
    • Sportswear usage
    • What's important
    • Products purchased
    • Quantity purchased
      • Table Number of sports clothing items purchased
    • Replacement cycle
      • Table Replacement cycle ~ female sports clothing shoppers
      • Table Replacement cycle ~ male sports clothing shoppers
  • Methodology
    • What is included
    • Market sizing

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