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A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
OptionResults
The economy has not affected my participation in traithlons.113 Votes - [24.67%]
The economy has affected my participation in triathlons.57 Votes - [12.45%]
The economy is generally improving from a year ago.17 Votes - [3.71%]
The economy is generally unchangedfrom a year ago.33 Votes - [7.21%]
The economy is trending worse than a year ago.64 Votes - [13.97%]
Triathlon is "recession proof".2 Votes - [0.44%]
Triathlon has been affected by the recession.52 Votes - [11.35%]
I am not negatively affected by the economic situation54 Votes - [11.79%]
I am affected negatively by the economic situation.66 Votes - [14.41%]
This is a multiple choice poll.

2011-09-21 9:49 AM

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Elite
3498
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Laguna Beach
Subject: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

I know you love the polls...Tongue out

Multi-options, so more than one vote- as usual.

Also- I often share the results of the polls conducted here within the industry when relevant. I know they aren't scientific, but they are interesting talking points, so I appreciate your responses and insights as do others in the triathlon and cycling industry who look in.



2011-09-21 10:01 AM
in reply to: #3694811

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Elite
3498
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Laguna Beach
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

Thanks for the votes girls and guys- keep 'em coming please.

2011-09-21 10:43 AM
in reply to: #3694811

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Champion
10471
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Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
So 2009 was a rough year for me. I had two different jobs, and was out of work half of the year. I finally got a job that didn't lay me off, January 2010.

At the end of 2009, I was still registering for races (mostly running since it was off season) in early 2010. I didn't have a job, but having a goal to work towards, I saw as very important. I knew it would keep me off the sofa if I was focused on training. And it would keep me from getting depressed. To me it was not a luxury item. It was a necessity.

In 2010 I got certified as a tri coach... after getting certified as a personal trainer. I wanted a back up plan... if I couldn't get a job in my area of expertise. Luckily, I did get a day job, but I still persued the tri coaching.

I should say that when I did get a day job, I lost $12,000 a year in salary. Which was a huge monetary hit.

In Jan 2011 I joined a local tri club as a coach. Now, that business on the side, pays for me training for, and racing in triathlons. And it's not really a "job", because I love doing it so much!

So while I was negatively affected by the economy, by being out of work and having to take a job making a lot less... me participating in triathlons, etc. was not affected by the economy.



2011-09-21 11:00 AM
in reply to: #3694811

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Elite
3498
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Laguna Beach
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

Early in the voting- but it's potentially interesting that 24.71% of us say "The economy has not affected my participation in traithlons".

...But...

Only 15.29% of us say, "I am not negatively affected by the economic situation".

I wonder- does this suggest that triathletes' devotion to the sport transcends their economic concern- that they will continue to spend within the sport even when they reel in spending in other areas?

2011-09-21 11:19 AM
in reply to: #3694811

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Champion
10471
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Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
Something to consider too... you are polling people who are actively checking and involved with a triathlon message board. Which means they are probably doing triathlons.

The people I know, who lost jobs and quit doing tri's... because they couldn't afford it... aren't around BT anymore.

So your study might not get to the demographics who would say that they stopped doing tri's because of the economy affecting them negatively. Just a thought.

2011-09-21 11:31 AM
in reply to: #3694988

Extreme Veteran
597
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NE Ohio
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

KSH - 2011-09-21 12:19 PM Something to consider too... you are polling people who are actively checking and involved with a triathlon message board. Which means they are probably doing triathlons. The people I know, who lost jobs and quit doing tri's... because they couldn't afford it... aren't around BT anymore. So your study might not get to the demographics who would say that they stopped doing tri's because of the economy affecting them negatively. Just a thought.

great point. some that converted to just running or a less expensive form of undurance/fitness might stay around, but i would say most people when they leave something and the vested interest is gone, they leave all parts of the hobby behind. not all, but most i would say.



2011-09-21 11:34 AM
in reply to: #3694811

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Pro
4277
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Parker, CO
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

^^  I agree that someone that lost their job and quit triathlon probably would not be on BT.  As a long-time and employed triathlete I have cut back.  Not just this year but past years.  partly because of the economy but also because I just think they have become too expensive!  But I also have been around the sport long enough to have known people that have lost their jobs and then run up debt (for a while) so they can continue their passion for triathlon.  To me...that's sad.

2011-09-21 11:49 AM
in reply to: #3694811

Subject: ...
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2011-09-21 11:52 AM
in reply to: #3694988

Elite
3498
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Laguna Beach
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

"Something to consider too... you are polling people who are actively checking and involved with a triathlon message board. Which means they are probably doing triathlons.

The people I know, who lost jobs and quit doing tri's... because they couldn't afford it... aren't around BT anymore.

So your study might not get to the demographics who would say that they stopped doing tri's because of the economy affecting them negatively. Just a thought."

Absolutely true- which is why I am careful to characterize what this is not: It isn't science, isn't a study.  It's a "straw poll" so to speak. That said, there is value in it as the contributors on internet forums like Slowtwtich.com and BeginnerTriathlete.com weild much more influence than our industry is willing to conceed in public.

But in private...

2011-09-21 12:11 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Master
6821
50001000500100100100
Orlando
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

I didn't start participating in triathlons until last year, so the economy was already bad when i began.  This year I will race 1 more triathlon than last year.  Although I travel for most of the races, I always have a place to stay so I don't have hotel and other associated expenses.

I am one of the people who checked that my triathlon participation has not been affected by the economy and that I have been negatively affected by the economy.  I'm lucky to have a steady job and paycheck, but I have not had a raise in a few years because of the economy.

2011-09-21 12:14 PM
in reply to: #3694953

Pro
4838
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Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
Tom Demerly. - 2011-09-21 11:00 AM

I wonder- does this suggest that triathletes' devotion to the sport transcends their economic concern- that they will continue to spend within the sport even when they reel in spending in other areas?

Bingo



2011-09-21 12:18 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Member
36
25
Arvada
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
I think triathlon is subject to declines in the economy/recession.  Mostly in the form of athlete and race sponsorship.  As an age grouper, I have put off a bike purchase in favor of having a rainy day fund and dropped a couple of races from my calendar.  Also in terms of innovation, some companies may choose to cut back on R&D and have slower new product introductions
2011-09-21 12:31 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Veteran
168
1002525
St. Louis
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

We have had a brutal two years but my wife finally got a new job after being out for 10 months back in July.  At a 60% reduction in pay, but we're still extremely grateful for the job for her.  I'm new here, only been "doing tri's" since April, and I have been doing this as cheaply as possible.  I'm riding a borrowed road bike and already had a MTB, so I'm OK on the bike side of things.  Also, I'm buying everything used if I can.  The classified forum here is a lifesaver for me.  I think I've gotten this far on about $300 of money that I wouldn't have spent anyway (like $80 for new running shoes that I would have spent regardless). 

I'm doing this as a life changing process, because if I didn't change my life soon I wouldn't have a life.  So to a certain degree I'm willing to spend what it takes to do this sport, but only to a point.  If I weren't able to get that borrowed bike and buy so much used gear at huge discounts I would just be running and wondering what it's like to do a tri.  So has the economy prevented me from doing this?  No.  But it sure has effected how I do it.  Some day I'll grow up and have my own bike, and maybe a Red Rider BB gun with a compass in the stock too!!

2011-09-21 1:02 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Master
1366
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PNW
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

I answered that my participation in triathlons is not affected by the economy, but I can't really say that for sure as I didn't start this sport until we were already in a recession.  What I don't know is if I'd be doing MORE if the economy were better because I've not experienced that yet in relation to this sport.

Considering that this is BEGINNER triathlon and that our economy has sucked for the better part of three years now, this may be true for a lot of respondents.   You may want to keep that in mind when analyzing the results.

2011-09-21 1:15 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Elite
3090
20001000252525
Spokane, WA
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
I started triathon 6 years ago--so before the recession.

I'm actually in a better place financially than when I started, so I voted that I'm unaffected by the recession in terms of my participation. I just paid $700 for IM Canada 2012, so I guess that shows I'm still spending on the sport.
2011-09-21 1:25 PM
in reply to: #3694811

NH
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
The tough times haven't directly affected me in that I've had a job throughout, for which I'm grateful, but the lack of free easy money of startups from the late 90s certainly has affected the way I participate.  If I had started this 10-15 years ago the finance committee would have been just fine with a decked out sweet new tri bike, now the jalopy road bike is good enough.


2011-09-21 1:30 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Elite
3498
20001000100100100100252525
Laguna Beach
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

Another intersting thing about the opinions flushing out here is that they track directly with international opinions on the world economy tabulated in a real, more "scientific" poll conducted by the BBC.

From Greece to China to Vietnam to Indonesia to France- people respond that their country- and the world- is re-entering a recessionary phase, or that it never left it. Americans too.

The significant take-away for the sport is that, while it likely slowed growth in triathlon, this industry has been relatively resilient

I wonder how golf, tennis, motorsports (ATV's, jet skis), skiing, recreational SCUBA and other related discretionary industries are fairing in this environment? My guess is, perhaps not as well... I'd like to see some data though.

2011-09-21 1:31 PM
in reply to: #3695205

Extreme Veteran
597
500252525
NE Ohio
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

zed707 - 2011-09-21 2:15 PM I started triathon 6 years ago--so before the recession.

I'm actually in a better place financially than when I started, so I voted that I'm unaffected by the recession in terms of my participation. I just paid $700 for IM Canada 2012, so I guess that shows I'm still spending on the sport.

I'm with you, but i know that's the exception. everyday hearing stories related to job losses and financial strain bothers me a lot.  i feel bad for the people out of work, their families, etc. So in that sense, it does affect me, and makes me spend less. Maybe bacause i have two young kids now and their wellbeing supercedes mine, or maybe because i appreciate how fortunate i am and how things can change, but either way, it affects me.

2011-09-21 6:36 PM
in reply to: #3694811


434
10010010010025
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
I am at 50% of past income (more than a year, now), and it has affected by spending big time!  I need new bike shoes; thinking about duct tape for getting them through the winter.  I passed on a sprint that was $100 (thinking about an upcoming $35 half marathon).  I really wanted to get back into tris this season after heart surgery in Feb), but may just do a solo swim/bike/run to feel like I am "back."  Fortunately, workout clothes last a while, and I get a year out of running shoes.  Swimsuits at $10 from swimoutlet last six months. 
2011-09-21 7:03 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Master
7914
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Eugene, Oregon
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.
I'm fortunate to have a full-time job and not have been unemployed in recent years, so it's not absolute lack of money that affects my training/racing, but a lack of financial security. It's extremely hard to get teaching jobs in the US and I know that re-entry there will be difficult, maybe impossible in the short term since I don't have many contacts. Overseas employment is contract-to-contract, usually in two-year increments. You don't have the protection of a union so anything can happen; the job market is also very vulnerable to global economic changes. So it's hard for me to justify spending more on my hobby (and I could really use a better bike, more travel to races, and a coach, for starters) since I know that I might really need that $ to help out my family, tide myself over a jobless stretch, and save for retirement.  I'm sure it affects other people similarly, at least those in middle income brackets and below, even if they are employed. It's made most people more risk-averse, and spending a lot on something not connected to long-term financial security (unless, maybe, you're a pro with tons of sponsors, in which case it's probably not your own $ anyway) is a risk.
2011-09-21 7:19 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

I am not currently negatively affected by the economic situation - our income has remained about the same (small COL increase) for the last several years. Having two young mouths to feed affects my economics more than anything. In the same respect, the economy has affected my participation in triathlons. Just the overwhelming feeling that I "should" be pinching my pennies.

I am not comfortable spending so much money on one race. I feel a little bit of "what if". What if my husband would not get his contract renewed, or we have to move, or the thousand other what ifs I can think of and I've blown 500 bucks on races in one summer?! I would regret that. So I try to make race choices that put very little to no impact on the family income.  This year I have only competed in two races (partly due to injury). One a local sprint that only costs 35 dollars and the other a local HIM that I had a free entry to due to volunteering for the RD at 2 different races. I save any birthday or Christmas money I get specific to me (yes I'm 39 and my parents still give me birthday money ) in a jar just for race season so I don't feel like I'm blowing the family money on something that really only benefits me.

There are tons of other ways I pinch a penny for triathlon but I won't bore you anymore since that is not really what you asked!

 



2011-09-21 7:38 PM
in reply to: #3694811

Elite
3498
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Laguna Beach
Subject: RE: A New Poll for you Guys: The Economy and Triathlon.

This has been a great poll and I've e-mailed the link around the industry. Within the cycling and triathlon industry this is a topic that has come up in most conversations I've been in during the last year- so thank you all. Keep the comments and replies on the poll coming...

Everyone gets a happy cat with a bowl on its head for this:

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