Page added on December 14, 2012
Record numbers of women and men in the East Midlands are playing sport, with 1.3million taking part every week. That’s an increase of 70,000 on last year. Across the country, figures released today by Sport England show that 15.5 million people[i] aged 16 and over are playing sport at least once a week. That’s 750,000 more than a year ago and 1.57million more than when London won the Olympic and Paralympic bid. The strongest growth has been among women, with an increase of more than half a million in the past year helping to cut the gender gap in sport[ii].
The number of people taking part has risen sharply in the period since the London 2012 Games got underway[iii], with strong increases in Olympic sports such as cycling and sailing. Participation by disabled people has been rising steadily since 2005,[iv] but still lags far behind that for non-disabled people[v]. Sport England this week announced a £10.2million National Lottery investment to tackle this challenge. Leicestershire, Leicester and Rutland stats: There has been a statistically significant increase in participation within our County Sports Partnership area (1 x 30min) We now have the 10th highest (1 x 30min) participation figures of all County Sports Partnerships ~ Highest in the East Midlands.
Since Active People Survey 1, our 1 x 30min participation figures have grown by 2.3% – the 2nd highest in the East Midlands Leicestershire County Council area has the 4th highest 1 x 30min participation rates of all County Council areas. The highest outside of the South East. Leicester City increased by 2.1% since Active People Survey 1 3×30min – Rutland is the most active area in England (31.8%) John Byrne, LRS Director, said: “LRS are delighted to see the growth in the number of people taking part in Sport as measured by the Active People survey in both the numbers taking part once a week and those who take part three times per week. The growth in the long term position and the upward trend is the most pleasing. LRS have worked with County and City partners to encourage participation in a range of sports and we are delighted to see that there has been a real growth of 2.3% since 2005/6.”
Sport England’s Chief Executive, Jennie Price, said: “We set the bar high in this survey, measuring only the people who play sport once a week, every week. These results show we are on the right track. I’m particularly pleased that many more women are taking up sports from netball and cycling to running. “Sport needs to work even harder to attract and keep young people. So the investment in individual sports we will be announcing before Christmas will be strongly focussed on getting more 16 to 25-year-olds playing sport.” Minister for Sport and Tourism, Hugh Robertson, said: “One of the key legacy ambitions from London 2012 was to get more people playing sport –something that no other host city has managed to do. These are excellent figures and show that we are making good progress.” Two thirds of the sports measured by the Active People Survey[vi] have shown a positive trend over the past year with athletics[vii], judo, hockey, netball and swimming among those growing in popularity.
Cricket was among the grassroots sports that suffered during the wettest summer for a century. Young people aged between 16 and 25 are the most active in our society[viii], but increasing participation among this age group remains tough and this is the priority for Sport England’s five-year strategy announced in January.
For more information visit: www.sportengland.org/research/active_people_survey.aspx