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Active Play Research - Inspiring Scotland

Inspiring Scotland is working in partnership with the University of Strathclyde to measure the impact of investment in Go2Play and the interim evaluation results are now available.

  • The research is testing the extent to which Go2Play projects increase the physical activity of children taking part, and how much children’s fundamental movement skills improve as a result of their participation.
  • The interim evaluation of research into Active Play suggests active play projects are making a positive impact in both increasing physical activity and improving movement skills.
  • Figures show that 399 children in Glasgow have taken part in active play at primary school, nursery and in the community with four organisations taking part in the research: Jeely Piece Club, Healthy Valleys, Enterprise Childcare and PASP.
  • Initial evidence shows that children started with low levels of physical activity. Measurement of levels of physical activity of a sample showed that children in schools are spending the majority of their school time in sedentary behaviour, with only 8% of time spent doing moderate to vigorous physical activity.
  • The research also reveals that the baseline levels of FMS among children are very low but active play is improving their skills and confidence in their physical abilities. Interim findings also shows all children have increased their levels of physical activity as a result of taking part in Active Play.
  •  Delivery organisations are collecting evidence that suggests children are becoming more active during Active Play sessions and playing for longer without the need for a break.
  • Some children are already moving into other sports/activities. The number of children doing more physical activities or joining clubs or starting to use local facilities is a longer-term outcome but as of this month, research suggests progress is already clear with one organisation reporting 21 children have joined new clubs since starting Active Play.
  •  Play staff are more aware and understand the benefits of active play better, staff are more confident in supporting active play and more parents are encouraging their children to engage in active play.

The findings are encouraging and they hope that the final results will help raise awareness of the benefits of active play for improving the lives and life chances of children in Scotland.

Children will be retested at the end of the programme to measure any changes in FMS and changes in levels of physical activity.