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COVID-19 Still Affecting Return To Community Sport

S
port Australia have released a new study that found the COVID-19 pandemic is still affecting Australians returning back to sports.

The study found 80% of adults and children who played organised sport before COVID-19 had returned to at least one sport they played before the pandemic by March 2021.

Restrictions to junior sport resulted in participation of those playing in organised sport outside of school at least once a week dropped from 55% in 2019 to 43% in 2020.

The main reason for adults not returning to organised sport is COVID-19 concerns which leads the way at 38%, with the top reason for children not returning being junior competition having not re-started (37%).

However, there was an increase of participation of socially distanced sport such as golf, tennis, and mountain biking, with women contributing more to the increase than men.

It’s estimated that 253,000 more Australian adults participated in golf in 2020 and 185,000 more participants in tennis.

Adults became more physically active on purpose during COVID-19 with a significant increase in frequency of participation.

The survey revealed 44% of Australians said they missed sport being in their life during the early phases of the pandemic but that dropped to 30% by December 2020 and then to 26% by March 2021.

On the report, Minister for Sport, Senator the Hon Richard Colbeck, said: “The Australian government, through Sport Australia, is getting on with the job of supporting sport.”

“We recognise it will be a long recovery process for some and we remain committed to supporting sport through these uncertain times,” he said.

Minister Colbeck recently joined Ministry of Sport in welcoming the Women in Sport Summit which took place last Friday and said: “This is an exciting time for sport in Australia particularly as we emerge from the impact of the pandemic.”

To view more of Minister Colbeck on the summit, click here.