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Measuring impact

Emphasising the economic impact of physical activity and sport – how it creates jobs, promotes growth and drives exports – is a fundamental part of our Towards an Active Nation strategy.

We want organisations to consider not just how they contribute to the nation’s health or wellbeing, but to the economy as well, both nationally and locally.

The evaluation tools featured on this page are designed to help measure the impact sport and physical activities can have on the population’s health and the economy. Each resource can be used by you as part of your wider case for retaining or securing additional investment in sport and physical activity.


  • What is MOVES?

    Designed to be used by people within the sport and activity sector, MOVES is a tool that shows you the return on investment of projects, programmes and interventions for the health sector.

  • How does it work?

    MOVES has been developed by us and the University of East Anglia’s Medical School Health Economics Consulting Group.

    At the heart of MOVES is an epidemiological engine – the study of the patterns, causes, and effects of health and disease – that contains UK data relating to population, age and gender, and the related disease rates for conditions that could be improved through sport and physical activity.

    The tool compares groups that engage in physical activity with the same group as if they hadn’t taken part. It estimates the reduction in risk of seven long-term conditions and hip fracture from increased physical activity. The tool then assigns an economic value to the resulting health improvements created by the physical activity.

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  • Are there different versions of MOVES?

    The initial version of the tool was launched in September 2015, with version 2.0 of the tool (published in November 2016) featuring updated data sources and the latest evidence and economic analysis principles.

    We recommend that those who’ve downloaded and saved the original version of the tool delete that version and use MOVES 2.0 for all future modelling.

    Due to the changes in functionality and the updating of the underlying principles in the tool, the outcomes from MOVES 1.0 and MOVES 2.0 are not comparable.

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Download MOVES

You can download the MOVES Excel tool below, and if you have any queries about it, please feel free to email us.

The start of a women's BMX race

The Economic Value of Sport: Local Model

Using our Economic Value of Sport: Local Model, local authorities, Active Partnerships and local enterprise partners in England can demonstrate the substantial benefits of sport to their economy.

The model allows you to begin to assess the impact of sport investments – for example, what additional economic value is created as a result of an increase in participation in your area.

It does this by producing area-based estimates on sports’ contribution to the local economy in the form of a business output (GVA) and jobs, as well as wider benefits such as health.

Guidance is provided throughout on how to navigate the model, as well as detailing the best use of this evidence as part of making the case for retaining or securing additional investment in sport in your area. 

Measuring impact, group huddle lacrosse

Value of Sport Monitor

Our Value of Sport Monitor provides reference sources and critical reviews of research and evidence on the contribution of sport to a range of social issues.

The downloadable documents, split across seven topics, can be used to aid policymakers in making decisions that will positively impact the opportunities for people to get active through sport and physical activity. 

Each report, as well as a document explaining the criteria for the inclusion of research, can be downloaded using the links below.

We've got a number of tools to help you understand who's getting active across England, and how, why and where.


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