Category Archives: General

Have you seen the new Made By Sport campaign?


Major fundraising campaign for community sport

We’re backing a major new campaign that will help use sport for good.

Made By Sport is a four-year campaign that will attempt to change lives by raising in excess of £40 million for community sport.

The campaign launched last week with a glamourous event attended by the Duke of Sussex and former world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua.

And we’re keen to use National Lottery money to help the campaign achieve its objectives.

“Sport is a powerful force for good that can change people and places for the better,” said our chief executive Tim Hollingsworth.

“We believe that everyone should have the right to experience and benefit from sport, yet the sad reality is that deep inequalities prevail which mean these benefits are not equally shared.

“Made by Sport is a big, bold new idea that has the potential to challenge perceptions and change many thousands of young lives for the better.”


Made By Sport intends to reach its target through a combination of corporate partnerships and public fundraising initiatives.

And with young people from poorer backgrounds around 50% less likely to play regular sport, Made By Sport chair Justin King hopes the new campaign, which will be the largest fundraising campaign ever undertaken for grassroots sport in the UK, can make a real impact.

“Sport has the power to change lives,” he said. “It can teach us skills that last a lifetime and – in a world where local sports is under increasing pressure, where it’s easier to play on your phone than in a park and where joining gangs can be more glamorous than joining teams – we believe it can play a pivotal role in how young people develop.”

New fund to increase diversity in coaching


Fund to diversify sport and physical activity workforce

We’re making up to £1 million available to diversify coaches and volunteers in the sport and physical activity sector.

Our Workforce Diversity Great Ideas Fund will be open for a month, from today, and we want to hear from anyone wanting to engage women and/or BAME communities in volunteering or coaching opportunities.

With both Coaching Week and Volunteers’ Week taking place now, the National Lottery funding has been allocated to address the fragmented workforce – partly comprised of coaches and volunteers – that is currently lacking diversity.

We regularly hear fantastic stories of women and people from BAME communities getting involved and making a difference to people around them.

But we know that there are barriers facing them in getting started, so we’re keen to find ways that we can support more people from these backgrounds into the sport and physical activity workforce, and to help ensure they have a really positive experience once they’re engaged.

Trying new things

“Learning what works to engage and support these audiences into volunteering and coaching is key and we want to work with you to learn what approaches work and why,” said our head of coaching Stuart Armstrong.

“There are any number of potential learning opportunities. Maybe you’re planning an unusual partnership, or want to test ways of using new technology to get women engaged in volunteering.

“Perhaps your organisation has never had any connection with sport before, but has something different to offer within a sport or physical activity setting.

“Whatever your ideas, we’re keen to find out what we can discover together.”

Applications can be submitted between now and 3 July, with our team then assessing submissions and contacting selected projects to develop a full application in August and September.

Final decisions on funding will then be made in October and November.

Helping people with dementia get active


Guide to dementia-friendly sport and physical activity

“I have a little exercise routine that’s really important to me because I know what’s good for the heart is good for the head and it probably keeps the dementia at bay.”

For Tracey Shorthouse, taking part in physical activity at her local gym plays a crucial role in managing her condition.
The 48-year-old, who was diagnosed with young onset Alzheimer’s and Posterior Cortical Atrophy in 2015, is one of 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK.

“My memory’s not bad at all – my dementia affects balance and vision and although I always put on a brave face, it’s not all sweetness and light and can be scary,” explains Tracey.

“I feel lucky that the people at the gym are so supportive and I hope gyms and sports centres follow their lead because the benefits are socially and physically vital to people with dementia.”

Yet, despite dementia being increasingly common, many people with the condition struggle to live active lives and say there can be many barriers that prevent them taking part in activity.

These could include difficulty in navigating around a sports facility or remembering how to use equipment in a leisure centre. Others worry about people’s reactions: for example, staff not understanding their difficulties, or a lack of confidence in finding the right activities.

Bringing down barriers

We believe sport and physical activity is something everyone should be able to enjoy and benefit from.

That’s why we’ve teamed up with the Alzheimer’s Society to produce a dementia-friendly sport and physical activity guide.

The guide, which was produced with National Lottery funding and can be downloaded here, aims to help the sports sector bring down barriers that prevent people living with dementia from taking part in sport and physical activity.

The practical guide aims to inform and educate individuals and organisations, so they have a better knowledge of dementia and how it affects people.

It also provides tools and guidance so that the sector can help more people affected by dementia enjoy the benefits of staying active in a caring and understanding environment.

Getting young people more active in coastal communities


Increasing activity in disadvantaged coastal areas

We’re working with the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust to improve the lives of 700 disadvantaged young people in coastal communities around England by helping them to get more active.

A new investment of £749,300 will be put towards an adapted version of the organisation’s Get on Track for Wellbeing programme, which we’ve previously awarded them £6.9m over six years to help deliver.

The National Lottery funding will use sport and physical activity to help young people develop personal, social and emotional skills, which in turn is likely to increase their wellbeing.

“I’m passionate about the power of physical activity to transform lives,” said double Olympic champion runner Dame Kelly Holmes.

“I’m proud that Sport England have chosen my charity to work with young people across the country to increase their physical activity levels and I know that the brilliant athletes we have working with the Trust will inspire and motivate them to transform their lives.”

Unlocking potential

The programme will be delivered by elite athletes who, working with local delivery partners, act as mentors to young people and unlock their potential.

Working in Dover, Grimsby, Hull, Scarborough, Southport, Torbay, Liverpool and Folkestone, the project is targeting areas of low socio-economic status that have high levels of inactivity among their population and, as a result, have issues with wellbeing and ill health of their young people.

With young people more likely to become and stay active when they feel connected to their community and have positive influences and opportunities, part of the programme is aimed at delivering social action that will impact on a further 3,500 people in their communities.

The mentors will introduce the young people to new activities, with the aim of moving them from being classed as inactive to active over the course of the programme, by breaking down perceived barriers to activity and helping physical activity to become a part of their everyday lives.

Active Lives Children and Young People Survey


Children’s attitudes to sport and physical activity come

Enjoyment is the single biggest factor in motivating children to be active, new analysis from our Active Lives Children and Young People Survey has revealed.

More than 130,000 children and young people were surveyed in the academic year 2017/18, with participation figures published in December.

The report measures children’s physical literacy. This is a combination of a person’s enjoyment, confidence, competence (how easy they find it), understanding (that it is beneficial) and knowledge (knowing how to get involved and improve).

Key findings

This new analysis has identified five key findings that give us further insight into the attitudes of children and young people towards sport and physical activity.

1. Physically literate children do twice as much activity. The more of the five elements of physical literacy children have, the more active they are.

2. Enjoyment is the biggest driver of activity levels. Despite the majority of children (68%) understanding that sport and activity is good for them, understanding had the least impact on activity levels.

3. Children who have all five elements of physically literacy report higher levels of happiness, are more trusting of other children, and report higher levels of resilience (continuing to try if you find something difficult).

4. Physical literacy decreases with age. As children grow older, they report lower levels of enjoyment, confidence, competence, and understanding. Previous research from Sport England shows that activity levels drop when children reach their teenage years.

5. The results also reveal important inequalities among certain groups of children which must be tackled, with girls less likely to say they enjoy or feel confident about doing sport and physical activity. Children from the least affluent families are also less likely to enjoy activity than those from the most affluent, while black children are more physically literate than other ethnic groups.

Making sport fun

Our Chief Executive, Tim Hollingsworth, is calling for everyone involved in a child’s activity level to ensure that enjoyment is at the heart of anything they do.

“This is a critical moment for all of society to better understand what will motivate young people to get active,” he said.

“This survey gives us the richest evidence yet that sport and physical activity for children needs to be fun and enjoyable above all.

“We hope these results will be considered and acted on by all who deliver activity and sport. We look forward to playing our part to get children active as we roll out our national programme to train over 17,000 secondary school teachers in how to offer a greater breadth of PE and school sport that meets the needs of all pupils.”

Parkrun backed with major investment


Sport England making a £3 million investment in parkrun to help more women and people from lower socio-economic groups get active.

The three-year collaboration will support the creation of 200 new events across England as the National Lottery money will help to build on the phenomenal growth parkrun has seen in the 14 years since its creation.

There are 584 locations around the UK where parkruns take place each weekend and, with 1.8 million people having taken part already, our aim is to extend that network.

“This important partnership with parkrun is part of our ongoing strategy to help grow new and innovative sporting ideas and broaden their reach into the demographics in society who are least likely to be active,” said our chief executive, Tim Hollingsworth.

“The funding – which is only possible thanks to National Lottery players – will enable parkrun to reach females and people on a low income, who are less likely to be active than the general population.

“We know from our research that cost and a lack of local opportunities are real barriers in stopping people being more active, and what parkrun does brilliantly is offer free, community-based events for all abilities.

“We’re looking forward to working with parkrun to help even more people get and stay active.”


Parkrun began in October 2004, with a timed 5km run in Bushy Park, south west London.

Since then the free, timed, 5km runs have spread across the country and this investment will enable the modernisation of parkrun’s digital platform for registration, results and event information, in order to allow it to continue to grow indefinitely.

“This is an endorsement of the strides we have taken to create a model that empowers communities to implement a permanent mixed gender, multi-generational health intervention that appeals to a broad cross-section of society, particularly those for whom physical activity and volunteering is not the norm,” said the organisation’s chief executive, Nick Pearson.

“We are now in a position to build on our message and encourage more people to walk, jog, run and volunteer at our events by growing into new areas and engaging new audiences.”

Club Soccer Director 2019


Sequel to the smash-hit football sim created by a real football manager arrives on The App Store and Google Play

  • Developed by a real life manager and coach with over 15 years experience

  • Unparalleled in-depth gameplay at the club level

  • Manage even more clubs – over 800 clubs across 38 leagues

  • Play as the Director and drive your club to success through hiring and firing your management team and squad, securing sponsorship deals and developing new facilities

  • Even more choice to hire and fire from  – 30,000 players and 10,000+ staff members

  • Improved stats engine mirrors real-life team and player behaviour

Northampton, UK – 4 September 2018. Marking the beginning of the new football season, Independent developer Go-Play-Games today announced that Club Soccer Director 2019 (CSD 2019), the latest iteration of its hit football management series has kicked off on The App Store and Google Play. This latest version features a raft of improvements and innovations over its predecessor including a huge choice of 38 leagues from new countries (including Portugal, Holland, Turkey, Russia, Scotland, Brazil), thousands more players and staff, new revenue opportunities, revamped AI and a new landscape view to work better on tablets.

While most soccer management games are focused on squad-level tactics, Club Soccer Director 2019  offers players in-depth control at the club-level. Players assume the role of the football Director in an existing or user-generated club from one of 38 leagues across 14  countries. With the ability to hire and fire at will, wannabe directors can impose their style on the squad by recruiting staff and skillfully negotiating the twice-yearly transfer window to find the best squad members.

As well as staff and squad management, player’s assume full control over their club’s facilities including the stadium, the training ground and the academy – all of which can be upgraded and improved, yielding happier fans, better players, and brighter academy prospects. Club Soccer Director 2019 features even more way to generate income through negotiating deals including sponsorship, ticket prices, stadium naming rights and other commercial revenue generating opportunities. Meeting, or exceeding season objectives on a regular basis improves the Director’s reputation, giving players the choice of moving to one of over 800 clubs across 14 countries.

For anyone that likes to tinker with tactics, players have the option to override the manager’s decision on match days, including team lineup, formation and both in and out-of-possession tactics. Players can also dictate to the manager how they want him to play. Club Soccer Director 2019’s live-action match engine has been overhauled to give a more realistic match-day environment. This includes improved tactical setups from managers in which they adapt to matchday situations. There’s also real-time statistics, individual player overviews and four different game speeds – giving gamers as much or little control as they want. Players can also watch post-match interviews that look and feel like a real-life sports broadcast.

Club Soccer Director 2019 development is being led by Jim Scott, a football manager and coach with over 15 years of experience. As well as being a current football manager, Jim has also 20+ years developing and publishing sports games for console, PC, and mobile platforms.

Club Soccer Director 2019 is available as a free app from the App Store at:

Club Soccer Director 2019 is also available as a free app from Google Play at:

Latest from the Pitch



Sport England have developed a plan to give the more than 400,000 people who work in the sport and physical activity sector in England the best possible support.

Working in an Active Nation’s vision is that everyone working in sport and activity feels confident, valued and supported.

This strengthening of the workforce would make it more able to give the best possible experience for the people who are – or who want to be – active.

A shift in emphasis will place a deep understanding of the people who do sport and activity at the heart of workforce development, helping a wider range of people to engage with getting active.

There are two main objectives in our newly published plan:

  • Support the workforce to become more customer focused
  • Develop the workforce so that it’s recognised as professional.

To help achieve these aims, those who work in the sector need to be recruited, developed and supported in the right way.

How they’ll achieve this

They’ve developed a series of strategic approaches and key actions that will help achieve these objectives.

This includes increasing the diversity and inclusion of the workforce and using insight to give a deeper understanding of the impact the workforce has on the people it’s trying to engage.

Good Sportsmanship



They had a big lead and, as the time wound down, the other team was starting to get frustrated and rather “chippy.” One kid in particular had locked into some one-on-one challenges with my son, who is mild-mannered and often plays the role of peacemaker.

Ultimately, my son’s team won and, as the teams lined up to do the sportsmanship handshake, this kid refused to shake hands with my son and others.  Instead, he walked away with a one-fingered gesture in their direction.

Not a great sport.

Based on my experiences, I am going to guess that he is the child of parents who also do not demonstrate good sportsmanship. What I have observed time and again in youth sports is that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Sadly, many parents today put winning above character.

Competition is a vital part of achievement and outperforming. In fact, the word “compete” comes from the Latin word competere which means “strive together.”  Yet, this concept tends to be misunderstood and underappreciated.

The reality is that we regularly compete in most aspects of our life. We compete for jobs we want, college admission spots, and for new clients and employees.

Unlike the boy my son played, Ty Koehn understands the essence of competition and character. Koehn is a high school pitcher in Minnesota. Last week during the sectional championship game, he struck out his best friend and competitor, Jack Kocon. This final strike advanced Koehn’s team to the state tournament.

As his team rushed to the pitcher’s mound to celebrate, Koehn immediately headed to home plate and gave Kocon a big hug before joining his teammates in celebration, as you’ll see in this inspiring video.

When asked about his reaction, Koehn said that he wanted his friend to know their friendship was more important than the outcome of the game.

The scene reminded me of a video I saw a few years back of a softball player named Sarah Tucholsky. Sarah had hit a three-run home run, the first in her college career, but she had missed making contact with first base on her first go-round. As she ran back to tag first base, she tore her ACL.

As per official rules, none of Tucholsky’s teammates could assist her in running the bases, which she couldn’t do because of her injured knee. The umpires also pointed out that Tucholsky’s hit would only count as a two-run single if she were replaced by a pinch runner.

What happened next was one of the most incredible acts of sportsmanship I’ve ever seen. It’s actually hard to watch this video without getting emotional.

Competing is about elevating our own game. It’s about practicing, getting better and having the will to win as a team. Instead of winning at all costs or wishing failure on others, real winners always prioritize character over winning itself. True sportsmanship requires that we know how to win well and be gracious in defeat.

Do you know how to keep you family water safe?



Latest stats show that 56 children under the age of 11 years old drowned in the UK in the last 5 years, with more than 300 people accidentally drowning every year.

And for every drowning death that occurs, there are more than 10 near drownings, with many of these leading to life changing injuries
We at the RLSS UK strongly believe that lives could be saved if children and young people were taught how to be safe near water.

We launched the Drowning Prevention Week campaign five years ago to help put water safety at the forefront of everyone’s mind in the lead up to summer, a high-risk time of year for drowning. 

Drowning Prevention Week, this year running from 15-25 June, is a national, awareness raising campaign and every year schools, leisure centres, community groups, businesses and MPs use our free downloadable resources to teach their local communities how to stay safe near water.

We want to equip everyone, young and old, with basic water safety skills to help them identify risks and make informed choices around water based activities.


There are a number of things you can do to help keep your family safe this summer:

At home

• Always use self-closing gates, fences and locks to prevent children from gaining access to pools of water
• Securely cover all water storage tanks and drains
• Empty paddling pools and buckets as soon as they have been used. Always turn paddling pools upside down once empty

• Always supervise bath time (never leave children unattended). Empty the bath as soon as possible after use

On holiday

• When researching your holiday, or arriving at your destination, check the safety arrange-ments of any water-based activities and if there is lifeguard cover at the pool or beach
• Check bathing sites for hazards, check the safest places to swim and always read the signs – find out what local warning signs and flags mean. Take time to check the depth, water flow and layout of pools
• Swim with any children in your care – it’s more fun and you can keep them close and safe
• On beaches check when the tide will be high and low and make sure that you won’t be cut off from the beach exit by the rising tide. Also, be aware of dangerous rip-currents
• Inflatable dinghies or lilos are a well-known hazard – each year there are drownings as people on inflatables are blown out to sea. Do not use them in open water
• Do not swim near to or dive from rocks, piers, breakwater or coral
• Swim parallel to the beach and close to the shore
We believe that the majority of drowning incidents can be prevented, especially with children. No family should ever have to go through the pain of losing a child through drowning. Making sure everyone is aware of the basic principles of water safety helps to keep families safe, and still enjoy the water. 

We don’t want to stop people having fun in the water, far from it, we want everyone to have fun and enjoy the summer weather. But it is important to remember that drowning can, and does happen, and that there are things you can do to prevent tragedy. 

To get involved with the campaign, find out what your local leisure centre is doing or visit our campain wesbite for our free resources at

Stay safe this summer!

Karen Welsh, RLSS UK Campaign Manager

For more information about RLSS UK: visit their website at, follow them on Twitter @RLSSUK, visit their Facebook page –, join their LinkedIn page – @rlssuk