MSC Ops Blog
Sports Participation in Canada, 2005
The following are some brief excerpts from the Statistics Canada study: Sports Participation in Canada, 2005
Statistics Canada – Catalogue no. 81-595-MIE2008060
It is interesting to note that the report deals primarily with team sports, excluding activities like running, (non-competitive) and weight lifting, and I note that triathlon is only mentioned in the appendices.
Guidelines for determining whether a physical activity fell within scope as a ‘sport’ were determined by Sport Canada. Specifically, a sport is an activity that involves two or more participants engaging for the purpose of competition. Sport involves formal rules and procedures, requires tactics and strategies, specialized neuromuscular skills and a high degree of difficulty and effort. The competitive nature of sport implies the development of trained coaching personnel.
respondents aged 15 and over in the 10 provinces were asked whether they or any other household members had regularly participated in any sport during the previous 12 months. Regularly means at least once a week during the season or for a certain period of the year.
National sport participation rate continues to decline
The national sport participation rate1 dropped in 2005, a continuation of the downward trend that was observed in the 1998 General Social Survey results. Participation in sport declined from 45% in 1992 to 28% in 2005 in Canada. In 1998, more than a third (34%) of the Canadian population aged 15 and over had participated in sport on a regular basis; seven years later, the figure was about one quarter of the population. That was down from 9.6 million Canadians in 1992 to 7.3 million in 2005.
Participation highly concentrated in a few sports
Out of nearly 100 sports played in Canada, participation is highly concentrated in about 20 sports led by golf, ice hockey, swimming, soccer, basketball, baseball, volleyball, skiing and cycling. For men, concentration was mostly in hockey, golf, basketball, baseball and soccer, in that order. A quite different picture emerges for women. They preferred swimming, golf, soccer, volleyball and skiing.
Active participation declining while volunteering in sports increasing
In contrast to a declining active sport participation, volunteering in sports showed notable increases overall. The number of amateur coaches increased 1.6% from 1998 to almost 1.8 million in 2005. Similarly, over 2 million Canadians volunteered their time as administrators or helpers, up 18% from 1998. However, the number of adult Canadians who volunteered as referees, officials or umpires decreased 15% to 800,000 in 2005 after it peaked at 937,000 in 1998.
Relaxation ranked the most important benefit of sport participation
Active Canadians cited relaxation as the most important benefit of sport participation. In 2005, 73% of active Canadians ranked relaxation as the most beneficial outcome of participating in sport. Physical health and fitness came second with 68%. Improvement in social networks through association with new friends and acquaintances was ranked the least important at 34%.
Participation in swimming by individuals over 15:
|764,000||221,000||Total (2.9% of population)|
According to swimming.ca SNC's goal is to have 70,000 registered swimmers by 2012. More information on how many of those 221,000 club swimmers are 15-18 would be helpful! Why do we only have 10,000 members registered with MSC?
Children's participation in sport driven by parental involvement
In 2005, the participation rate was only 35% for children aged 5 to 14 with neither of their parents involved in sport compared to 57% if at least one parent was an active participant.
A possible lessen here is that if you want active children become a Masters Swimmer!
Participation in tournaments highest among youthsThe proportion of active Canadians participating in tournaments decreases with age. They are most likely to be young and still in school. The school environment is typically conducive to competitive sport at all levels of schooling. Schools have the facilities and infrastructure that make it easier for students to be part of teams that engage in tournaments.
In 2005, 59% or almost 6 out of every 10 active Canadian youths aged 15 to 18 participated in tournaments. This rate was about twice the rate for active Canadians aged 35 and over. This is a trend that has remained stable over the past 13 years.
However, those in the 19 to 34 age group slightly increased their participation in tournaments over this period. In 1992, 3 out of every 10 active persons in this age group competed in tournaments. By 2005, 4 out of 10 participated in tournaments.