The Institute of Medicine recently published a report featuring National Poll on Children’s Health research on pay-to-play sports and an NPCH infographic. The report, Educating the Student Body: Taking Physical Activity and Physical Education to School, assesses the sedentary lifestyle of children and teens in the U.S. and examines efforts to promote physical activity in schools.
NPCH research is highlighted in the chapter “Approaches to Physical Activity in Schools” under the heading “Barriers to Participation in Sports” (p. 283-285). The report highlights a 2012 National Poll on Children’s Health about fees to participate in school sports. In this NPCH Report, we found that over 60% of children who play school sports had to pay an athletic pay-to-play fee and in lower-income households, nearly 1 in 5 parents said cost was the reason their children no longer participate in school sports.
With obesity yet again among the top child health concerns among adults in the U.S., physical activity for children is vital. School sports are a great way for kids to be active, but as the IOM report highlights, cost is a barrier for many children.
To learn more about the NPCH pay-to-play study, watch this short video with our Associate Director, Sarah Clark:
Has cost been a factor in your children’s participation in sports? What other barriers get in the way of physical activity for kids?