Fitness over feasting: Young Chinese embrace healthy lifestyle during holiday

During the eight-day National Day Holiday that started on September 29, many young Chinese vacationers opted for fitness over feasting, choosing to participate in various sports activities instead of indulging in holiday food binges. This reflects the rising craze for sports and health among the modern Chinese generation.

Many scenic spots across China have been promoting the concept of “sports plus tourism” to attract young consumers who are looking for more than just sightseeing. For example, a lake resort in the city of Jilin organised more than 20 sporting activities for tourists, such as frisbee, hiking, tennis competitions and swimming. It also built a 1.9 km jump trail for mountain biking, which proved to be very popular.

Fitness over feasting: Young Chinese embrace healthy lifestyle during holiday
Fitness over feasting: Young Chinese embrace healthy lifestyle during holiday

Ms Zhao Lele, from south China’s Guangdong Province, was one of the tourists who enjoyed the sports plus tourism experience. She cycled through the forests of Changbai Mountain, in north-east China’s Jilin Province, with a group of friends. “Appreciating the pleasant view while doing sports is popular with young people nowadays. This healthy ‘slow-paced travel’ is exactly what we need to step back from the fast-paced chaos and stress in urban life,” she said.

Keeping fit at home

Not all young Chinese people travelled during the holiday. Some chose to stay at home and do some exercise to keep fit and healthy. A pilates studio in Jilin’s provincial capital Changchun was packed with people on the first day of the holiday. “I’m usually too busy, and the holiday is the right time for me to do some exercise,” said Ms Chen Yun, an automotive engineer.

Mr Liu Shuang, who is in charge of the studio, has witnessed the change in people’s ideas about exercise. “In the past, holidays were very much our off-season. However, since more and more Chinese are paying attention to maintaining a healthy lifestyle, we’ve been getting busier during holiday periods in the past two years,” he said, adding that all the training sessions provided by 15 coaches during the holiday were fully booked in advance.

National fitness campaign

The increased priority placed on fitness and sports in modern China is not only a personal choice, but also a national strategy. Believing that people’s health is one of the most important indicators of modernisation, Chinese authorities have elevated nationwide fitness to a national strategy and designated August 8 as National Fitness Day since 2008, when the country hosted the Beijing Olympic Games.

A series of sports events, such as the Chengdu University Games and the ongoing Hangzhou Asian Games, have further ignited people’s passion for sports activities. The country has also proposed the promotion of “15-minute fitness circles” in urban communities, providing physical exercise facilities that residents can reach within 15 minutes.

Some rural areas have also joined the national fitness campaign by organising sports events for villagers during the holiday. In a village in east China’s Zhejiang Province, a basketball tournament was held to celebrate the harvest season. “More people are coming to watch the games during the holiday,” said a villager Kong Jian. He hopes such activities can be organised more often, enriching villagers’ lives while also helping to mobilise people to participate in the national fitness campaign and promote rural revitalisation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *