Scottish Government Equality Outcomes: Religion and Belief Evidence Review

This evidence review was prepared to support the production of the Scottish Government's Equality Outcomes, with regard to religion.


12.1 In an undated research summary of sports equality research conducted over 15 years[54], the EHRC reports findings from the Taking Part survey, which show that the lowest rate of sports participation is for Muslims (61%), and the highest is for Sikhs (78%) and those with no religion (77%).

12.2 In the Scottish Health Survey 2012[55], respondents who said they belonged to no religion were most likely to meet the physical activity recommendations. 40% did so, which was significantly higher than the national average of 38%. Muslims (29%) and members of the Church of Scotland (37%) had significantly lower proportions meeting the recommendations than the average. In terms of sport participation, Muslims were also the least likely to participate in sport (39% did so in the previous four weeks). Roman Catholics also had significantly lower sport participation than the average (46% compared to 49%). Respondents from Other Christian groups had significantly higher sport participation than average (52%).

12.3 A literature review for Sporting Equals (2009)[56] describes the difficulties of addressing sectarianism in sport in Northern Ireland, particularly where an ethos of inclusivity in sport jars against a wider, even institutionalised, sectarian philosophy.


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