NutraCast Podcast: Optimum Nutrition's Sarah Lombard on sports nutrition trends

By Danielle Masterson contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Sports nutrition, consumer behavior, ecommerce, nutracast

Sarah Lombard, Director of Brand Marketing for Optimum Nutrition, joined the NutraCast to discuss how the sports nutrition category has evolved and where it might be headed.

Despite the pandemic, the sports nutrition market is expected to witness growth this year, likely due to the increase in the consumption of sports nutrition products, especially those that focus on immune support. 

“Historically, the category has been known for bodybuilders, more hardcore fitness and elite athletes,​" she said.

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, an athlete is "a person who is trained or skilled in exercises, sports, or games requiring physical strength, agility, or stamina."​ 

However, surveys found that most people who work out regularly do not consider themselves athletes. 

“That’s very consistent with consumer insight and focus groups we’ve done in the past too. Consumers are interested in pursuing a healthy, active lifestyle. As soon as you coin it as ‘athlete’ most folks don't consider themselves an athlete unless they’re a professional athlete, they’re running track, they're playing basketball, they're playing a specific sport, but they’re working out a lot," ​Lombard said.

Lombard said that as a result of the pandemic, behaviors have shifted —perhaps permanently. She observed consumers going into a slump in their personal workout programs at the beginning of the lockdown, but eventually embracing the situation by purchasing gym equipment for their homes, buying supplements and exercise apps. 

“In addition to that, the way in which they’re purchasing supplements has changed dramatically as well. The consumer has really shifted to e-commerce,” ​she added.

Lombard said with brick and mortar stores closed, the predicament has made it easier for consumers to consider buying supplements online, a trend that could be here to stay.

To hear more about these trends, listen to the full conversation on the NutraCast. You can also subscribe on iTunes here.​ 

If you enjoyed this conversation, be sure to check out the upcoming sports nutrition webinar on July 8th, presented by NutraIngredient-USA.

NutraCast is a podcast that focuses on insights from inside the nutrition industry. It is a production by NutraIngredients-USA​. Music by Kevin Macleod.

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