Posted: Fri, 09 Dec 2022 15:07
Sport England's Active Lives Children & Young People Survey is the most comprehensive study of activity levels among children and young people aged 5-16 in England. The annual statistics provide detailed insight & understanding around their sport and physical activity habits.
The full report, available in full by clicking here shows that children & young people's activity levels have recovered back to pre-pandemic levels – an encouraging step in the right direction, though there is much more to do.
• 3.4 million (47%) children & young people were active, meeting the CMO's guidelines of taking part in an average of 60+ minutes of sport and physical activity a day across the week.
• Overall activity levels are up 2.6% - 219,000 more active children – compared to 12 months ago and notably are back in line with 2018/19, the last full academic year before the pandemic.
• Positively, the number of less active children (those doing less than an average of 30 minutes of activity a day across the week) has decreased by 143,000 (-2.3%), but it is of concern that there has been a 250,000 increase in the number of children & young people doing no activity at all (+3.3%) compared to the 2017/18 academic year.
Demographic groups have recovered at different rates
• Boys' activity levels have largely driven recovery, after a notable decline during the pandemic. 50% of boys are now doing an average of 60 minutes a day compared to 45% of girls. But 100,000 more girls are playing football regularly compared to our baseline in 2017/18 (even before the Lionesses success at the European Championships), and secondary school-aged girls are now more active than at any point since the survey began.
• Recovery is not universal with those in school years 3-4 (ages 7-9) not yet back at pre-pandemic levels, suggesting Covid has been most disruptive to younger ages' activity habits.
• Equally, black boys' activity levels are not yet back at pre-pandemic levels - despite a notable increase compared to 12 months ago, they remain 7.7% lower than pre-pandemic.
• The gender gap also remains widest between Asian girls and boys (10%) followed by Black (8%) and Other minority ethnic (also 8%) children & young people.
• Those from less affluent families are still less likely to be active than those from more affluent families (42% compared to 52%) and children and young people going to school in the most deprived places in the country have not seen activity recover to pre-pandemic levels.
To view the report in full, visit the Sport England website by clicking here or download the report below. Data specific to Children and Young people in Wiltshire and Swindon will be available in the coming months.