Anticipated post-pandemic substitution behavior among new outdoor recreationists in the U.S. analysis across involvement and activity clusters

William L. Rice, B. Derrick Taff, Ben Lawhon, Peter Newman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: While much research has examined the increase in outdoor recreation and those who began participating in outdoor recreation during the COVID-19 pandemic, to-date no published empirical research has examined perceived post-pandemic recreation participation among the latter group. Research Methods: Through a national panel survey of 902 respondents, we examine differences in perceived post-pandemic substitution behaviors across activity- and involvement-based clusters of new or returning outdoor recreationists using a two-part cluster analysis followed by analyses of variance. Results and Findings: Results suggest significant differences exist across activity- and involvement-based clusters. On average, this research suggests that Runners, Purist Gardeners, General Recreationists, and Casual Recreationists are less likely than High Intensity Recreationists and Hunters & Anglers to abandon outdoor recreation after the pandemic. Implications: Implications are provided for both the continued development of substitutability theory and outdoor recreation managers as they adapt toward a post-pandemic future. Specifically, managerial implications concerning the demand for activity-specific facilities and leisure abandonment are provided. Research Contribution: These results provide new knowledge concerning how outdoor recreation participation among new participants may change in a post-pandemic future, and how involvement relates to substitution more broadly.

Original languageEnglish
JournalManaging Sport and Leisure
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • New outdoor recreationists
  • involvement
  • leisure abandonment
  • substitution

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