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4177.0 - Participation in Sport and Physical Activities, Australia, 1996-97  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 10/06/1997   
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MEDIA RELEASE

June 10, 1997
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
73/97
One third into organised physical activities

Nearly 6 million people (one third of the population) participated in an organised sport or physical activity in the year ended June 1996, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today.

Sixty-two per cent of children aged between 5 and 14 participated in either school organised or club organised sport or physical activities, the most popular activities being swimming, basketball, netball and soccer. Boys were more likely to be involved than girls (65 per cent compared to 58 per cent).

Thirty-one per cent of people aged 15 and over participated in organised sport or physical activities. The most popular activities were aerobics, golf, tennis and netball. Males had a higher participation rate (34 per cent compared to 27 per cent).

Age is a key factor in determining whether people undertake an activity, and if so, which ones. In the 15-24 age group the most popular activities were aerobics, netball and basketball, while for those people 45 years and over the most popular activities were lawn bowls and golf.

These figures refer to participation in organised sport or physical activity, ie an activity which is organised by a club, association or school.

For each participant aged 15 and over it cost an average of $652 to be engaged in organised sport or physical activity. Costs for the most popular activities were aerobics ($371), golf ($822), tennis ($307) and netball ($233). These costs included membership fees, transport and weekly fees, clothing and equipment and other miscellaneous expenses.

The most expensive organised sport or physical activities for people aged 15 and over were horse riding ($1833), motor sports ($1653), air sports eg hang gliding, gliding ($1301), ice/snow sports ($959) and scuba diving ($958).

In total, participants spent $2.8 billion on sport and physical activities in 1995-96.

In addition to organised sport and physical activities, people may participate in sport and physical activities on a social basis - ie without belonging to a club, association or school. The most popular social sport and physical activities were swimming, fishing, cycling and weightlifting.

Participation in Sport and Physical Activities, Australia (cat. no. 4177.0) provides national and State details on over 40 organised sport and physical activities undertaken by people aged 15 and over.

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