Sport England is to invest a further £50million into grassroots sport as part of a campaign to aid its recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.
But on Monday, it launched a new 10-year vision called Uniting the Movement, which will lead to a further £50m going towards clubs, organisations and people helping the nation to get and stay active.
The primary focus will be on children and young people, while another key target is tackling long-standing inequalities within grassroots sport, with lower activity levels for disabled people, those from lower socio-economic groups and from black and Asian backgrounds.
Sport England chair Nick Bitel said: “Sport England is determined that, led by this strategy which is the result of 18 months of in-depth consultation, we will unlock the advantages of sport and physical activity and truly make it a normal part of life for everyone in England, no matter what their background.
“It recognises the enormous challenges of the past year but seeks to make certain that we do everything possible to ensure that investment and resources reach the people and organisations who need it most so together we can change lives for the better right across the country.”
In the first lockdown, Sport England figures showed there had been a drop of three million adults taking the 60 minutes of daily exercise recommended by the Chief Medical Officer.
And research earlier this month showed that there had been a 17 per cent drop in activity levels by children and young people during the pandemic. In addition, just 45% of children in England were currently getting the recommended daily exercise.
Sport England said there were five main issues to build a more active nation: recover and reinvent, connecting communities, positive experiences for children and young people, connecting with health and wellbeing, and active environments.
Sport England CEO Tim Hollingsworth added: “This strategy comes at a critical time. Many organisations are struggling, and activity levels have taken a significant hit. But amid all that challenge and uncertainty, we believe there are also enormous opportunities to fast track the role sport and physical activity plays in helping people to live happier, healthier lives.”