Movement, activity and sport play an important role in young people’s social, emotional and physical development and can provide a safe space for young people. However in Greater Manchester, just 36.6% of children and young people do less than 30 mins of physical activity a day, therefore missing out on the these benefits.
Activity rates also differ significantly across Greater Manchester; activity rates are lower for girls, disabled children, children in poorer families, and young people of Asian, Black (African or Caribbean), mixed, and White non-British heritage. This contributes to longer-term inequalities in health; for example, disabled children are more likely than non-disabled children to be sedentary, placing them at higher risk of obesity and associated health conditions over their life course. These inequalities have also been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Childhood presents a pivotal point in a person’s life to influence life-long engagement in physical activity. It provides an opportunity to help shape the habits and behaviours of future generations, which is achieved by embedding the 5 elements of physical literacy: enjoyment, confidence, competence, understanding and knowledge. Children and young people also inspire and influence the habits of the adults around them, including parents, carers, teachers and support services – creating an influential ripple effect.
Within these priorities we have identified some key areas we would like to share further information on, which collectively will ensure more positive experiences for children and young people in Greater Manchester:
For information aimed directly at young people and opportunities in Greater Manchester visit Greater Manchester Apprenticeship & Careers Service here.
The Access to Activity forum will work together with partners to co-produce and co-design services that address inequalities and increase opportunities and access for SEND children and young people to be active.
Inspired by The Daily Mile™, more than 250 pupils, families and staff from St Mary’s Catholic Voluntary Academy in Marple Bridge took part in a marathon relay, raising over £3,000 for the school.