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Tackling Inactivity in College Students Insight Pack

21 June 2023

We are proud to announce the launch of the "Tackling Inactivity in College Students Insight Pack." This initiative aims to delve deeper into the challenges faced by young people in colleges and identify innovative ways the sport sector can revolutionize the promotion and delivery of physical activities to reduce inactivity among college students.

The Insight Pack, developed in collaboration with Platypus Research, offers invaluable insights into the barriers that prevent college students from engaging in regular physical activity and presents suggestions to overcome these challenges.

Key findings from the research shed light on crucial factors that influence college students' participation in sport and physical activities:

  1. The Power of the Initial Experience: The study highlights that the initial experience in a sport or physical activity session plays a pivotal role in determining whether a participant will continue to engage in the activity. Feeling personally welcomed, understood, and supported enhances engagement, builds rapport, and helps tailor future sessions to meet individual needs.
  2. Community Engagement: Interestingly, over 50% of college students expressed a preference for being active in their community rather than at college. However, they feel that community sport does not provide a suitable space for them. It is often perceived as geared towards children or adults, emphasising competition, commitment, or membership. This crucial insight prompts the need to bridge the gap between community sport offerings and the unique needs of college students.
  3. Barriers to Participation: The research identifies the three biggest barriers to participation among college students as cost, time, and motivation. Addressing these challenges is paramount to creating an environment where physical activity becomes more accessible, convenient, and enticing for college students.

We recognises the urgency of taking action to address the issues identified in the Insight Pack. By collaborating with colleges, sports organisations, and community stakeholders, AoC Sport aims to spearhead a transformative movement that will improve the way sport is promoted and delivered to college students, resulting in a significant reduction in inactivity levels.

Matt Rhodes, Senior Policy Manager at AoC Sport, expressed his enthusiasm about the launch, saying, "The Tackling Inactivity in College Students Insight Pack is a game-changer in understanding the unique challenges faced by college students and devising effective strategies to overcome them. By harnessing the power of this research, we can create a sport and physical activity landscape that resonates with college students, addresses their needs, and ultimately leads to increased participation and improved well-being. I’d also like to thank all of the colleges and students who gave up their time to support this insight".

AoC Sport is now inviting colleges, sports organisations, and industry leaders to join forces in implementing the insights presented in the Insight Pack. Together, they can make a lasting impact on college student's lives, promote active lifestyles, and empower the next generation to lead healthier and happier lives.

For further information and access to the pack, click here "Tackling Inactivity in College Students Insight Pack."