Closures and confinement have long been synonymous with inactivity and weight gain. But many Quebec families seem, on the contrary, to have fallen in love with winter again, as evidenced by the packed outdoor sites.
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“They started to enjoy free sport more, and we needed to take a step in that direction, for the health of Quebecers. Ironically, COVID-19 helped us do this, everyone goes out more this winter, ”notes Pierre Lavoie, speaker and co-founder of the Grand Défi that bears his name.
However, a survey carried out by the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ) between December 11 and 23, 2020 indicates that one in two Quebecers (51%) has decreased their physical activity in recent months compared to same period last year.
For Mr. Lavoie, these data reflect the impact of closing gyms and the impossibility of playing team or indoor sports.
Photo Didier Debusschère
But this context pushed the population to find other options.
“In a way, that’s good news. People [sortent] and move spontaneously, for their health, ”he says.
Martin Boucher, CEO of the Boucher Sports Group which owns 20 stores in Quebec, also observes a “phenomenon in all outdoor sports”.
“The most important trend is in cross-country skiing. Our inventories are very, very low ”, explains Mr. Boucher, even using the term“ shortage ”.
“We also sold more rackets last week in [ramassage sur le trottoir] than last year with the stores open [à pareille date] He continues.
Photo Didier Debusschère
Running and fitness walking are also “very important”, just like skating, says the CEO of the company.
Yesterday, the Pointe-aux-Lièvres Winter Sports Site in Quebec City was completely packed with families enjoying the winter, despite the freezing temperature of -25 degrees Celsius.
“Usually we do a lot of skiing, but it’s difficult to get a seat at the moment, it’s very busy. So we fell back on the skate and the slide! », Suggested Laurélie Trudel, who had just finished a skating session with her sons Sasha and Olivier.
“The pandemic has made us discover more places outside our home,” she adds.
Snow to come
A storm forecast for tomorrow, which could bring between 20 and 30 centimeters of snow in the region, will also set the stage for the 67e edition of the Quebec Winter Carnival, which will begin on February 5.
Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my firstname.lastname@example.org 1-800-268-7116