Sport and physical activity makes people happier and healthier, and movement is the lens through which we can make that happen. It does the same thing for our communities, with life-changing, sustainable benefits that have huge economic and social value.
That’s why we want sport and physical activity to be recognised as essential to help overcome these national challenges.
We recognise the need to invest in sport and physical activity through national governing bodies, other sports bodies and local sports clubs, organisations and community groups to increase engagement for different groups as part of our core purpose. But we need now to go further in promoting movement in general as the means to unlock sport and activity for some people.
There are deep-rooted inequalities in sport and physical activity, which mean there are people who feel excluded from being active because the right options and opportunities aren’t there:
- Disabled people and people with a long-term health condition are twice as likely to be physically inactive than those without a disability or health condition.
- If you’re in a lower socio-economic group (NS-SEC 6-8), you’re more likely to be inactive than people in higher social groups.
- Women are less active than men, and this gender gap starts with girls being less active from a very young age.
- People from Asian and Black backgrounds are far more likely to be physically inactive than people who are White – a fact reinforced by our 2020 ‘Sport for All?’ report.
This data only tells part of the story. In reality, each of us is a mix of these characteristics, and this leads to our diverse identities and communities. We’re not defined solely by our gender, our ethnicity, or our income. But for too long there have been clear patterns in the characteristics of people who feel less able to get active.
These inequalities are at the very core of Uniting the Movement – we’ll have a laser focus on tackling them in all that we do, because providing opportunities to people and communities that have traditionally been left behind, and helping to remove the barriers to activity is vitally important.