New research figures released today confirmed Badminton’s status as England’s most-played racket sport and highlighted its continued and sustained increase in participation since 2002.
The Sport England Active People Survey 2 canvassed 191,000 people across England about their sporting habits. Figures suggest that Badminton has continued to attract more players, with 19,000 more people aged 16+ now taking part at least once per week. Although the increase is not large enough over this one period to count as statistically significant it indicates that Badminton participation is still on the rise.
Badminton has the sixth-highest participation rate of any sport recognised by Sport England, which now also includes jogging as part of athletics and recreational cycling and competitive cycling as one sport. Overall 1.29% of adults take part in Badminton at least once a week (535 700 people). This is up from 1.27% two years ago, and places Badminton ahead of such sports as Tennis (1.18%), Squash (0.71%), Rugby Union (0.56%), and Cricket (0.49%).
A report commissioned by BADMINTON England earlier this year revealed that numbers playing the sport had increased by 22% between 2002 and 2006, bucking the general trend of static participation across most sports in that period.
George Wood, BADMINTON England’s Head of Development, said “The new findings not only reinforce Badminton’s continued growth over this decade, but are in line with BADMINTON England’s funding targets for 2005 to 2009. This is extremely encouraging news as we await the outcome of our Sport England funding decision for the crucial period from 2009-2013. The statistics show the huge part that Badminton can play in delivering the legacy for London 2012 of more people participating in sport“
Further analysis of the results of Active People Survey 2 will be available in the New Year. For more information visit www.sportengland.org/index/active_people_2
(Photo courtesy of www.actionphotography.co.uk)