Youth sports are recovering to pre-pandemic levels


Data: The Aspen Institute;  Note: Includes time spent in free play, virtual space, practice and competition;  Diagram: Axios Visuals
Data: The Aspen Institute; Note: Includes time spent in free play, virtual space, practice and competition; Diagram: Axios Visuals

There is youth sports participation finally climbed back At pre-pandemic levels published annually by the Aspen Institute State of the Game Reportconducts a survey of parents of youth sports.

In numbers: Children between the ages of 5 and 18 are spending 16.6 hours a week on sports, the highest since before the COVID-19 outbreak.

  • The increase was largely driven by increased competition, which was up 32% from last year, totaling 3.7 hours in the week before the pandemic.
  • Virtual gaming is the only activity with less participation than last year, and is trending down year-over-year home gym classes is removed.

However: Sports-loving kids may be coming back, but the number of people who aren’t interested in sports at all is growing. There is a decline in participation been a topic for a whileand the COVID era has only made things worse.

  • An Aspen report found that 27% of youth sports parents say their child’s lack of interest in sports is preventing them from returning to the sport.
  • This is up from 18% in the early months of the pandemic.


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