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Player, who is visually impaired, playing tennisActivity Alliance’s Annual Disability and Activity Survey is supported by Sport England. It gives an in-depth comparison of disabled and non-disabled adults’ experiences of sport and activity.

Statistics continue to show disabled people are twice as likely to be inactive as non-disabled people. This new report helps readers to understand the motivations, barriers and scope for improvement in more detail. It gives an in-depth comparison of disabled and non-disabled adults’ experiences of sport and activity.

Activity Alliance’s Annual Disability and Activity Survey complements Sport England’s Active Lives Adult Survey. With the focus on disabled people, this report goes into greater detail on perceptions, experiences and important issues. Future years will enable Activity Alliance and partners to compare and contrast gaps and trends in the market.

Key findings:

  • Four in five (81%) disabled adults want to do more activity than they currently do compared with fewer than three in five (57%) non-disabled people.
  • Just four in 10 (40%) disabled people feel they are given the opportunity to be as active as they would like to be compared with seven in 10 (71%) non-disabled people.
  • Disabled people are half as likely as non-disabled people to agree that ‘sport’ is for someone like them (32% vs 63%).
  • Seven in ten disabled people are motivated to be active to improve or maintain their physical health.
  • Two in five (41%) disabled people said a fear of losing benefits prevents them from trying to be more active.
  • Two in three (67%) disabled people said they would listen to GPs, doctors and nurses about taking part in activity.

Report recommendations:

  1. To address the wider determinants of inactivity
  2. Design and lead a choice of accessible activities
  3. Challenge perceptions through inclusive and accessible communications

Barry Horne, Chief Executive for Activity Alliance, says:

“For the first time, we are able to compare perceptions and experiences of disabled people to non-disabled people. It is a new step in gathering a snapshot of real life for a huge number of people in our population.
“We want to achieve fairness for disabled people in sport and activity, a position where disabled people are as active as non-disabled people. The findings provide robust insight to Activity Alliance and our partners. This report will be key to helping us and others to change the reality of disability, inclusion and sport.”

Tim Hollingsworth, Chief Executive, Sport England, says:

“At Sport England we are all too aware that there’s an unacceptably high gap in activity levels between disabled and non-disabled people, and that despite a desire to be more active, many disabled people are missing out on the range of benefits that can be gained through physical activity.
“Activity Alliance’s first Annual Survey increases our insight into this issue and throws down a challenge to all in the physical activity sector: to use this new understanding to make sure that far more disabled people can get active in a way that is right for them. It’s a challenge that personally I know we must take up.”

Download the research report below and join the conversation on social media using #ActivityAllianceSurvey.