Sport and Physical Activity

Participation in sport and exercise in past month

In 2017 the vast majority of adults (81%) had taken part in physical activity and sport in the previous four weeks.

Participation in all physical activity and sport remained relatively constant between 2007 and 2010 (around 72%).

Since then people have become more active (rising to 75 per cent in 2011 and again to 81 per cent in 2017). The rise in physical activity is driven by the rise in recreational walking.

Chart: Participation in sport and exercise in past month

Frequency of participation

The frequency of participation in physical activity and sport among participants has increased since 2007.

The proportion of those who participated frequently (14+ days in the past 4 weeks) increased from just over a third (36 per cent) in 2007, to almost a half (49 per cent) in 2017.

It would appear this increase in frequency of participation is due to individuals who are already active becoming more active.

Chart: Frequency of participation

Participation in sport and exercise by SIMD

The gap between participation in sport and physical activity in the most and least deprived areas has been consistent over time.

In 2017, participation in physical activity and sport (including recreational walking) is lower for those living in the most deprived areas (71 per cent) compared to those living in the least deprived areas (90 per cent).

Chart: Participation in sport and exercise by SIMD

The most popular types of physical activity or sport

The most common activity in 2017 was walking for at least 30 minutes (for recreational purposes), reported by 70 per cent of adults.

Excluding recreational walking, the most popular physical activities and sports were swimming, keep fit/aerobics, multigym/weight training and running/jogging.

70% Walking (at least 30 minutes)

18% Swimming

15% Keep Fit/Aerobics

15% Multigym/Weight Training

14% Running/Jogging

12% Cycling (at least 30 minutes)

7% Dancing

7% Football

6% Snooker/Billiards/Pool

5% Golf


Contact

Email: Emma McCallum