Almost half—49.0%—of the US population ages 6 and over participated in an outdoor activity at least once in 2017. This continues three years of slight growth in outdoor participation.
During the calendar year, outdoor activities attracted 13.6 million participants who tried outdoor activities for the 1st time or returned after a hiatus. The loss of participants was slightly less—11.9 million people stopped participating— which netted 1.7 million more participants from 2016 to 2017.
Here are some highlights:
- Participants went on a total of 10.9 billion outdoor outings in 2017, a decrease from 11.0 billion in 2016.
- Running, including jogging and trail running, was the most popular activity among Americans when measured by both number of participants and by number of total annual outings.
- Adults who were introduced to the outdoors as children were more likely to participate in outdoor activities during adulthood than those who were not exposed to the outdoors as children.
- Outdoor participation among Hispanics has increased by an average 1.0% over the past five years and among Asians by 0.9%.