As the country steps into yet another lockdown, New Year’s resolutions to keep fit are being casually discarded. The closure of leisure centres, pools and courts means that many people have less ways to practise their sports and no friends to do so with. As the days are shorter and colder than the two previous lockdowns, the question raised is: will the dedication to keep fit continue?

Sport England said that the “gains [in sport activities] made in the first 10 month of the year [from May 2019 to May 2020] were cancelled out by drops in activity levels during [the first lockdown], despite an increase in cycling…running outside and exercising at home”. This increase of these activities shows that many people were determined to keep fit, despite the pandemic.

A resident of Beckenham, Anika Sharma, 14, believes that while there are negatives to sport centres closing, there are also positives. For example, she says one can “learn to be more independent” in exercising and “try new ways of being active”. However, she says that there is “less sense of community” which may affect confidence and remove the social incentive to exercise.

Sport has been proven time and again to be vital as it does not only have physical benefits. Mind, an organisation dedicated to improving mental health, cites research saying that outdoor exercise can reduce depression and anxiety. This is due to the endorphins released after and during sport, relieving pain and stress.

Over the summer, parks teemed with people exercising and walking. But in the depths of winter, those numbers have dwindled, in particular as the government has warned people to stay indoors. For many it may be easier to exercise outdoors, but it is necessary to keep active even indoors. Many exercises can be done inside without fitness equipment and there are also many workout videos on the internet to give people ideas.