During the pandemic, many people have turned to running to boost their mental health (and with gyms closed and sports on hold, for many it has been the only outlet for exercise). Now ASICS is embracing the trend with a new campaign, "Run to Feel," that highlights the changing needs of runners during COVID-19,
The company has carried out its own research on the matter among 14,000 regular exercisers in two countries. It shows that 81 percent of runners go running to "clear their mind" while 79 percent say that running is currently helping them feel saner and more in control. More than a third are more active now than they were before lockdown and meanwhile 73 percent say they want to keep on running as much as they are after the pandemic ends.
The campaign launches with a video by MXR Productions (above), which shows people putting on their sneakers and heading out for a run, to a backdrop of news reports about the pandemic.
As well as calling on runners to share their stories of how it has helped them using the hashtag #RunToFeel, ASICS will also launch a series of new initiatives aimed at helping the world’s runners stay active and connected: for example, training programs and virtual races hosted on the ASICS RunKeeper app. People can find these by following #RunToFeel or visit the campaign website.
“For most of us, life is full of anxieties, uncertainties and restrictions at the moment," said Yasuhito Hirota, president and chief operating officer, ASICS, in a statement. "As our study’s initial findings prove, a run has therefore become much more than just a run. It’s a way for people to put aside the extraordinary mental challenges of this pandemic. And importantly, it’s something which they want to maintain as lockdowns ease across the globe”.