Informal Sport Report 2021

For several years now, it has been recognised that lifestyles, patterns of work and importantly, ways of participating in sport, are changing. For many people, the rigidity, time commitment, structure and competitiveness of formal sport is increasingly unappealing and inaccessible. Instead, they are opting to participate in unregulated and flexible opportunities that align with their evolving lifestyles. Participation is thus being negotiated to better match abilities and interest, to have a greater focus on health, restoration, and the body, and to further enhance social connectivity.

This Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage project (LP 180100038) aims to enhance understanding of these trends and generate data that can inform future planning and provision across all tiers of government, sport and community stakeholders. This report summarises the first year of findings of the 3-year research project ‘Informal sport as a health and social resource for diverse young people’. The research is funded by the ARC in partnership with VicHealth, Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries (Western Australia), Centre for Multicultural Youth and Cricket Victoria.