What do we know about physical activity levels in children in Wales? How robust is the data on this issue?


National and local data about activity levels is not robust enough. To date the National School Sport Survey has provided the most relevant data, but unfortunately these figures can be manipulated according to the numbers and population type surveyed. A suggestion would be survey the entire population of specific / significant year groups i.e. Yr 3, 6 & 9 pupils.  


Differences in gender-based attitudes towards, and opportunities for, participation in physical activity in Wales.


There are obvious differences in gender participation rates, as well as attitudes / perceptions towards physical activity. The 2015 School Sport Survey for Pembrokeshire highlights a gender participation gap of 10%, particularly at Key Stage 4. As a direct result, Sport Pembrokeshire has prioritised its resources at the engagement of girls in yrs 3, 6 & 9.  (82.5% of secondary aged girls in Pembs participating at least once during 16/17)


The extent to which Welsh Government policies are aimed at whole populations and/or particular groups, and what impact that approach has on addressing health inequalities.




Barriers to increasing the levels of physical activity among children in Wales, and examples of good practice in achieving increases in physical activity, and in engagement with hard to reach groups, within Wales, the UK and internationally.


School Sport Survey statistics demonstrate the link between low levels of participation and areas of deprivation / poverty.

Pembrokeshire’s FSM 3 and FSM 4 schools have considerably less pupils ‘Hooked on Sport’ (active 3 x or more per week). As a direct result, Sport Pembrokeshire has prioritised its resources at the engagement of ‘vulnerable pupils’(SEN / FSM / BME /

Looked after children). 77 % of this target audience (1890 pupils) participated at least once in the last year.


Physical activity guidelines and how we benchmark physical fitness in children.


It is not a statutory requirement for schools to assess the level of performance or physical fitness of their pupils. Therefore National Curriculum Indicators are not reflective of the local population. Ideally all pupils in key specific years groups (i.e. at the end of each Key Stage) would be assessed during PE lessons on their physical literacy / competence. However, there is a definite lack of confidence amongst primary school staff in the assessment of physical literacy / competence. A suggestion would be an increased emphasis on Physical literacy and Physical Education within undergraduate Teacher Training, rather than having to expend considerable resource on re-educating qualified teachers post degree. 


Measurement, evaluation and effectiveness of the Welsh Government’s programmes and schemes aimed at promoting physical activity of children.




Value for money of Welsh Government spending to promote exercise in children.




The role of schools, parents and peers in encouraging physical activity, and the role of Sport Wales, NHS Wales and Public Health Wales in improving levels of physical activity.


Without the WAG funding, disseminated via Sport Wales, physical activities levels of young people in Pembrokeshire would be significantly less! Core funding for initiatives such as the Active Young People programme and Community Chest have had a considerable impact on local participation rates. For example, over the last 5 years the AYP team have coordinated and provided in excess of 273,500 extracurricular sporting opportunities in local secondary schools. In last 12 months alone, the ‘AYP’ initiative has also achieved the following :


·         formally engaged with 1216 Foundation Phase pupils,

·         mentored 409 members of school staff,

·         provided Physical Literacy training for 589 School Staff,

·         trained 20 parents and 170 ‘Playground Buddies’,

·         created an additional 31 new extracurricular clubs throughout the county. 


The continuation of long term funding to Local Authorities from Sport Wales / WAG, for the delivery of local and national programmes and initiatives that encourage physical activity, are vital to the future health and wellbeing of the nation!