Soccer is one of our favourite sports to play, according to new data.
Soccer is one of our favourite sports to play, according to new data. Brenda Strong

New survey reveals our favourite sports to play

WHEN it comes to organised sport, parents can be the biggest obstacles to youngsters getting involved, while time constraints are the biggest barrier to sport and physical activity for adults up to middle age.

According to the first results of the Australian Sports Commission's landmark AusPlay survey, 54% of children under 14 are active at least once a week in organised sport or physical activity after school hours.

But the most comprehensive survey of Australians' sporting activity and motivation has found the biggest barriers for children under 8 participating are parents' perception that they are too young to start playing.

The report also revealed Australians spend $10.7 billion a year on sport and physical activity participation fees, with less than a third (29%) going to sports clubs.

The data showed walking was the single most popular sport or physical activity for adults (43%).

The most popular organised sport or physical activity outside of school hours for children is swimming, while the most popular club-based participation sport in the country for adults and children is football (soccer).

Information was collected on more than 20,000 adults and nearly 4000 children.

The report found that organised sports participation peaked for children aged between 9-11 before noticeably dropping off.

Minister for Sport, Sussan Ley, said that parents needed to consider if their children were doing enough organised sport or physical activity outside of school hours.

"These results show we all need to be encouraging our children to get more active more often so they enjoy the health and social benefits that come with an active lifestyle,” she said.

Ms Ley said it is vital children increase their rate of physical activity.

"Campaigns, such as Girls Make Your Move, and programs, including Sporting Schools, contribute to increasing physical activity,” she said.

More information about AusPlay can be found at