Only the rich can afford the cost of living. And. What you call inflation is more like an embargo on your savings. To take away worth @50% is not inflation. It's a tarrif. The rest who aren't rich get shafted. So there goes the neighborhood of hobby and markets the rich (by chance?) are not vested in...I feel a big part of the problem is financial. I have watched as the cost of living has gone up and honestly - UL's are a cheap means of flying. Many of the folks who fly or flew them were not financially wealthy. I certainly was and am not. I have a cottage on a lake and my folks own a home on a lake that they've had for 50 years. Everyone on the lakes noticed the dramatic decline of how many folks use the lakes for any type of power boating. I remember when it was easy to burn up 4 to 5 gallons of fuel in an evening. A decent day of pulling water skiers and tubes - 15 to 20 gallons of fuel. The general consensus is that folks simply don't have extra spending money to put fuel in the tanks.
The loss of the training exemption for 2 seat planes and the requirements for instructor training and aircraft certification has brought "sport pilot" training to a cost similar or more than what a private pilot license cost 20 years ago. Then factor in what I see in my area - VERY - limited numbers of instructors and aircraft. I do not have an instructor based less than 1 1/2 hours of drive from home. Given the weather dependency of a UL type aircraft - this can be a very significant factor - as it has by me. The instructor and student make plans on training on a certain day - possibly the student drives to the instructor only to find the winds don't co-operate.
Then - the cost of ownership. The plane, hangers. A newer plane is going to cost as much or more than a new car for the family. Tough choices have to be made.
I still believe we can recover some activity with club owned UL's like my club has. Shared costs will help some folks. We're trying to get folks into the joy of flying that we shared decades ago. It is a challenge.