Developing ways to engage young people with sport

The overall purpose of the project was for students to work alongside Sport England and develop new ideas for helping young people to be active. Students worked on projects to discover new ways to engage young people with sport.

The students really engaged with the challenge. They all had a wide range of expertise and backgrounds, and the different perspectives brought to the problem opened a myriad of diverse solutions, all of which had merit.

Jennifer Bufton, Data Manager at Sport England

About Sport England

Sport England's vision is that everyone in England, regardless of age, background or ability, feels able to take part in sport or activity. From traditional team sports to activities like walking or going to the gym, Sport England are building an active nation that caters for everyone. In May 2016, Sport England launched their current strategy and outlined the work they will do between 2017 and 2021 to increase the number of people getting active.

Developing the ideas

The main aim of the project was to encourage young people to engage with sport, so Sport England provided two ideas for our students to devleop. The first is called Active Rewards, which is an app-focused concept where a user would be rewarded for hitting activity targets (gift cards, vouchers, discounts or charity donations). A wearable tracking device / app would be calibrated to track activities, and the user would be able to track progress online, add pictures and posts to keep a shareable social media diary. The second is called 'Festival of Sport', which is an event similar to big music festivals but based around discovering new sports. It would include a variety of sports to try out, social media influencers, and perhaps famous athletes and experienced coaches.

Students were asked to develop either product idea further by exploring certain areas. These included the technical considerations of taking data from other applications and administering incentives. Students were required to develop a prototype, brand, and detailed marketing and communications approach for both ideas. Additional considerations included how to incentivise referrals, potential partners, and what rewards incentivise the audience and how can these be structured to ensure long-term engagement. 

The organisation, communication, and delivery of the Collaborative Project was effective from start to finish.

Dr Steve Swanson, Lecturer in Sport Business at Loughborough University London

What is Sport England up to now?

Sport England are working in numerous different ways to get more people active through sport and exercise, and have seven new investment programmes to help them achieve this.