Future of leisure discussed in Clip ‘n Climb white paper

Clip ‘n Climb has compiled and launched a detailed white paper setting out future forecasts and predictions for the Sportainment sector.

As part of the white paper, Clip ‘n Climb commissioned a leading futurologist, Dr Ian Pearson, fellow of the British Computer Society and the Royal Society of Arts and Commerce to review the current market situation, analyse existing trends, and make informed predictions on the future of the market.

The team also carried out a series of research projects across the UK, Europe, the USA and Japan to review how much time children spend indoors and in front of screens, and what parents’ concerns are about their children’s social habits. Over 2,000 parents and children were surveyed and the findings showed children spend between 15-20 hours indoors on an average weekend with 90% of parents saying they would like their children to play outdoors more.

In his report, Dr Ian Pearson details how Sportainment can influence the development of imagination, creativity, cultural, scientific and geographical education. He predicts that technological developments will take Sportainment to the next level by combining the real and the virtual, the physical and the imaginary, into one immersive experience. He views that gamification software incorporated with any form of activity will encourage audiences to get active and connected simultaneously.

Embracing both technology and physical activity will positively impact family and friendship groups, bringing a shared focus on bonding, achieving a goal, competing together and enhance overall fitness.

Dr Ian Pearson says: “Based on the research and my investigations, I strongly believe that activities such as indoor climbing, teamed with advanced technology can help to develop self confidence in people of all ages, encouraging families to bond through fitness.

“Tracking and comparing movements, scores, and levels of improvement helps individuals to achieve their full potential. Real-time or post-activity feedback can add to this leisure experience and encourage the person to improve their performance too.”

Clip ‘n Climb’s research revealed that parents want their children to be more active and the futurologist suggests that children will gravitate towards activities that embrace technology and gamification.

Clip ‘n Climb Product Manager, Tiphaine Lazard, says: “Through our consumer research, product development and our work with Dr Ian Pearson, our goal is to future-proof our climbing centres and make them ready for all generations and age groups. Within the next ten years, consumers will not want to just be bystanders in Sportainment, they will want to engage, be involved, and immerse themselves in the experience and the technology is emerging to make this happen.

“There are strong indications that there is an increased desire for activity-based Sportainment options and the opportunity to try different physical activities but we know consumer preferences are ever-changing. In the future, consumers will have shorter attention spans, will be even more keen to share experiences digitally and the ‘fear of missing out’ will increase.

“In line with this, our new Clip ‘n Score system fits with this shift towards gamification as the contactless technology of the application allows climbers to continually monitor their progress, agility, performance and scores. It is designed to embrace human connectivity, demonstrating our commitment to leading the way in industry innovation and our desire to stay one step ahead and act on future trends now.

The Clip ’n Score software has been developed over two years in close connection with the innovation services at ABEO – the global leader in the sports and leisure equipment sector and group owner of Clip ’n Climb.

The system allows climbers to challenge themselves gaining scores dependant upon agility, courage and difficulty. Using the new system, climbers can track their scores as well as their climbing height and speed via contactless technology.

Clip ‘n Climb is at the forefront of the fun climbing industry and is leading the way in research and development to improve customer experience and attract new consumer groups to the Sportainment sector.

Sportainment is an unofficial term, which relates to the fusion of sport and entertainment. The market is huge globally and is expected to grow by 65 billion dollars by 2020 in the USA alone.

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