How Americans Spend Their Time - Hobbies
days participation sports collecting
A hobby is an activity or pastime that is performed primarily for pleasure rather than for business. Hobbies were once the mainstay of leisure time. While this sort of activity still exists, industry observers believe it is less popular, seeming to have been surpassed by collecting, a profit-motivated activity.
Some of the most common hobbies are cross-stitching/embroidering, crocheting, quilting, knitting, cake decorating, model train collecting, wreath making, art/drawing, photography, gardening, studying genealogy, floral arranging, woodworking, and solving crossword puzzles. Children and teens often enjoy playing board games; drawing,
|Most popular sports for youth (ages 6–17) based on "frequent" participation, 2003|
|*2003 Soccer participation has been broken into outdoor and indoor soccer categories.|
|SOURCE: "Most Popular Sports for U.S. Youth Based on 'Frequent' Participation (Ages 6–17)," in "America's Children Seek Action and Adventure," Superstudy of Sports Participation, SGMA International, June 2, 2004, http://www.sgma.com/press/2004/press1086353384-1753.html (accessed September 9, 2004)|
|1 Basketball - 52+ days/year (25+ in 2002)||4,127,000|
|2 Fishing (freshwater/other) - 15+ days/year||3,472,000|
|3 Inline skating - 25+ days/year||3,467,000|
|4 Running/jogging - 100+ days/year||3,054,000|
|5 Stretching - 100+ days/year||3,052,000|
|6 Calisthenics - 100+ days/year||2,704,000|
|7 Baseball - 52+ days/year (25+ in 2002)||2,531,000|
|8 Outdoor soccer - 52+ days/year (25+ in 2002)*||2,435,000|
|9 Skateboarding - 52+ days/year||2,107,000|
|10 Touch football - 25+ days/year||1,998,000|
|11 Scooter riding - 52+ days/year||1,954,000|
|12 Court volleyball - 25+ days/year||1,894,000|
|13 Tent camping - 15+ days/year||1,880,000|
|14 Billiards/pool - 25+ days/year||1,879,000|
|15 Tackle football - 52+ days/year||1,840,000|
painting and sculpting; playing musical instruments; and card collecting.
The Hobby Industry Association (HIA), an industry trade group, in the 2002 Nationwide Craft and Hobby Consumer Usage and Purchases Study, found that 77% of surveyed households reported that at least one member engaged in a craft or hobby, a slight increase from 76% in 2001. Craft and hobby participants were often married, had children, were better educated, and had higher household incomes than noncrafters.
In 2002 the HIA reported that the U.S. craft and hobby industry accounted for $29 billion in sales, which was broken down into four categories: general crafts (43%), needlecrafts (29%), painting and finishing (18%), and floral crafts (10%). Crafters primarily created their projects for friends or household use. A majority made crafts to give as gifts (79%), or for themselves (69%), and for home decorating (61%), while many also made crafts for holiday decorating (43%). Only 15% made crafts to sell. So-called "heavy crafters," who accounted for 25% of total participants, spent an average of $1,552 on crafts and hobbies during 2002 and accounted for 77% of total dollar sales for the industry.
Collecting as Recreation
Collectors devote time, energy, and often considerable financial resources to amassing, compiling, and organizing their collections. Along with more common pursuits, such as stamp, coin, and sports card collecting, there are individuals and groups devoted to collecting
|Most popular sports for seniors (age 55 and older) based on "frequent" participation, 2003|
|SOURCE: "Most Popular Sports for U.S. Seniors Based on 'Frequent' Participation (Age 55 and Older)," in "America's Seniors Are Active: Indoors and Outdoors," Superstudy of Sports Participation, SGMA International, June 1, 2004, http://www.sgma.com/press/2004/press1086103721-19570.html (accessed September 9, 2004)|
|1 Fitness walking - 100+ days/year||6,277,000|
|2 Stretching - 100+ days/year||4,011,000|
|3 Treadmill exercise - 100+ days/year||3,059,000|
|4 Golf - 25+ days/year||2,966,000|
|5 Fishing (freshwater/other) - 15+ days/year||2,625,000|
|6 Recreational vehicle camping - 15+ days/year||2,189,000|
|7 Free weights: Hand weights - 100+ days/year||1,735,000|
|8 Bowling - 25+ days/year||1,647,000|
|9 Weight/resistance machines - 100+ days/year||1,493,000|
|10 Day hiking - 15+ days/year||1,414,000|
|11 Calisthenics - 100+ days/year||1,161,000|
|12 Fishing (saltwater) - 15+ days/year||1,147,000|
|13 Free weights: Dumbbells - 100+ days/year||1,040,000|
|14 Stationary cycling: Upright bike (regular) - 100+ days/year||1,031,000|
|15 Hunting (shotgun/rifle) - 15+ days/year||960,000|
everything imaginable, from antique automobiles, celebrity autographs, and memorabilia from events such as the 1939 World's Fair, to toys, action figures, and favors distributed with children's meals at fast-food restaurants.
Unity Marketing's Collectibles Industry Report 2002 found that 40% of U.S. households were involved with collectibles and characterized the typical collector as someone who was "younger, smarter, more affluent and shop[ped] in a much wider range of retail venues than yesterday's collector." While collectors had traditionally been female, men were now emerging as collectors, attracted by online auction sites such as eBay.