In July 2014, a total of 952 survey responses were submitted to a review process which looked to identify ‘good’ and ‘promising’ practice from a broad range of physical activity providers in communities across the nation. The results of this project were included in the Public Health England report ‘Identifying what works for local physical inactivity interventions’, produced in collaboration with the ukactive Research Institute and the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine.
Remarkably this was over 2 years ago, and much has happened since then.
ukactive has a new chair in Paralympian and Crossbench Peer Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson and a new Executive Director in Steven Ward. We have a new Prime Minister, a new Royal baby, the Rio Olympic and Paralympic games have come and gone, Tim Peake has been to space and safely returned, Donald Trump is the President-elect of the United States, Andy Murray is World number 1, the list goes on…
But one thing remains: the physical inactivity crisis.
The report released in November 2014, highlighted two very important facts. Firstly, there is a rich and diverse range of projects, programmes, and initiatives being delivered across the country that are tackling the physical inactivity crisis. Secondly, there is a lack of evidence that supports the effectiveness of these projects, programmes, and initiatives.
Therefore, on 9 November at ukactive’s National Summit 2016, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson issued an open call to all organisations, groups and individuals undertaking work that is actively contributing to increasing levels of physical activity across the UK to submit details of a physical activity programme that they or their organisation is running to our review – Promising Practice 2.
Through leading delivery of the Promising Practice 2 project, the ukactive Research Institute, alongside Public Health England and the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine, will look to identify programmes and initiatives that demonstrate impact and a return on investment for local communities, in the same way as other public health services like smoking cessation programmes.
This will allow us to provide practical guidance on how the physical activity sector can collect data to build an evidence-base around what works, share good practice, and how we can work together to improve the standard of physical activity.
The first time around, the 2014 project took a rigorous look at the evaluation of programmes. This time, however, we will be focusing on identifying, and championing those delivering fantastic opportunities for people to become more active and transforming lives across the UK.
Through completing the survey, entrants get the chance to demonstrate the impact of their programme to key stakeholders including Sport England and Public Health England, showcasing the excellent work that is being undertaken at both local and national level. Those delivering programmes and initiatives recognised as ‘good’ or ‘promising’ will also have the opportunity to exhibit at ukactive’s National Summit 2017 and Regional Roadshows and to use their submission as entry to the ukactive Flame Awards 2017.
We here at ukactive can’t wait to learn about the innovative programmes out there, as well as the progress that has been made over the last two years in getting more people, more active, more often!