What Americans Are Doing After Work, US Census Bureau Reveals

It’s not uncommon to take a moment here or there during the day to regain some energy, and it appears that Americans are leaning into the self-care that is leisure time. 

Taking Time to Relax

good sleep

With a rough 16 hours away from work, for most individuals, it’s important to relax, whatever that may mean.

What Is Relaxing for Americans?

man relaxing at work

The US Census Bureau classifies what might be seen as relaxing time as Leisure and Sports Activities.

They include watching or participating in sports games, exercise-related activities, and face-to-face or online socializing and communications, including hosting or attending parties and events.

Leisure Activities

watching movie

They also include what they deem to be ‘leisure activities’, including watching TV, reading, relaxing, thinking, listening to music or using a computer.

The American Love for Recreation

girl with us flag

The US Census Bureau reported that Americans spend, on average, 5.61 hours each day undertaking various leisure and sports activities.

Seniors Have More Time

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Individuals aged 75 and over were likely to spend, on average, 7.5 hours each day, the most time of all age groups. Watching TV was the most popular activity over the entire report.

Watching TV

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The US Census Bureau records watching TV as occupying an average of 2.8 hours each day for an individual, which was roughly half of the expected leisure and sports time.

Seniors Watch The Most TV

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The highest demographic for watching TV was those 75 years and older, who spent an average of 4.66 hours during weekdays and 5.10 during weekends and holidays. 

Playing Games And Computer Use

adults playing video games

It was estimated that 34 minutes per day was dedicated to playing games, while an additional 34 minutes was spent for socializing or communication purposes.

Teens Play The Most Computer Games

Impact of Video Games

Those aged between 15 and 19 spent over an hour and a half playing games, while those 75 and older spent under half an hour. 

Seniors Read More

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For individuals aged 75 and over, reading accounted for over 40 minutes on an average day, higher than any other age group.

The Subgroup Less Interested in Reading

woman readin blue book

The lowest demographic was those who had not completed high school, who were estimated to have no reading time at all during the week, with only an average 0.09 hours, or just over five minutes, on weekends.

Leisure And Sport for Parents

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The report stated that adults without children under 18 categorically engaged in over an hour more of leisure time than adults with younger children, reaching up to 7.12 hours on weekend days or holidays.

Parents With Teenaged Children

happy family

Parents with teenaged children, even as young as 13, also found themselves with ample time for recreational activities.

Unsurprisingly, those with children under six had the lowest amount of free time of all parents.

Male And Female Differences

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It was shown that men spend more time on their hobbies than females. Men spent 4.93 hours during the week, while women spent 4.3.

On weekends and holidays, men spent 7.10 hours on sport and leisure, with women only engaging in 6.11 hours. 

Male And Female Differences

friends happy on beach

Reading and Socialising were also led by females, while males held the highest time spent on computer games, sports and recreation.  

Does Education Affect Results?

educated man in graduation gown

When assessing education level, it was found that those who had graduated high school but had not progressed further with their learning had the highest hours spent per day on leisure and sports activities.

The lowest time spent was established by those who held an advanced degree. 

How Does Employment Weigh In?

Lighting for Online Teaching

Though unemployed individuals spent the most time on leisure and sports activities, spending between six and eight hours each day, the difference between part-time and full-time individuals was minimal.

How Does Employment Weigh In?

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While both part-time and full-time workers spent similar amounts of time recreationally on weekends and holidays, their mid-week activities were close.

Part-time individuals spent an average of 4.43 hours on leisure and sport throughout the week, while full-time employees who are expected to work significantly longer hours managed a close 3.27 hours.

Leisure and Sport are a Positive Part of Life

mn drinking water

Overall, the US Census Bureau surveyed over 8,000 individuals for their data, acknowledging that almost everyone (95 percent) spent at least some time every day engaged in a leisure or sports activity.

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The Benefits Of Leisure Activities

fall when playing sport

With research bodies within the National Library of Medicine recording the benefits that sport and leisure can have to the physical body, including psychological improvement and cognitive strengthening, it is far from a bad thing that Americans are embracing time for themselves.

This article has been produced by TPR Teaching. Source. 

Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.

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