Consider the backdrop: lack of exercise contributes to one in every six deaths in the UK and costs the UK economy an estimated £7.4bn per annum.
Now consider the findings from a new survey published today by Women in Sport, suggesting that just seven per cent of girls in England are meeting government recommendations for physical activity. Children and young people aged 5-17 should engage in moderate to vigorous-intensity physical activity for at least 60 minutes a day, according to official guidance – but fewer than 1 in 14 female pupils actually manage it.
The charity Women in Sport is calling on schools to ‘invest in girls’ and commit to tackling the problem of sports participation as early as possible.
Meanwhile in other news, an FA move to improve the way the most talented girl footballers progress to England level has somewhat backfired, with irate parents launching a campaign over lost facilities. Strict new FA requirements about standards, facilities and staffing of the re-named regional talent clubs mean county FAs and professional clubs, including Watford and Fulham, have not applied for one of the 35 licences. The result is that coaching of the best girls from ages eight to 16 is not being evenly spread around the country.
What are your thoughts on such developments for grass-roots clubs such as Worplesdon Rangers FC?