National Lottery funding will help students get active

Healthy living - encouraging students to do more physical activity

Chesterfield College has been given £160,000 funding from Sport England to reduce the number of their students who are completing less than thirty minutes of activity each week.

Sport England’s new Strategy ‘Towards an Active Nation’ puts tackling inactivity at the heart of what they do.  As part of this initiative Sport England is investing £5 million into projects in colleges that will support their inactive students into regular activity.

Sport England research found:

  • Nearly 1/5 (roughly 138,000) college students are inactive i.e. do less than 30 minutes of physical activity a week as per England’s Chief Medical Officer’s recommendations. Nearly 2/3 of the inactive group do nothing at all 
  • Students who go to college are more inactive than students who go to sixth form or university.
  • Being active can make a big difference to everyone’s health: 1 in 6 adults in the UK die as a result of being inactive.

Chesterfield College will introduce a Healthy Lifestyle project which will target specific groups of students who are doing less than 30 minutes physical activity each week with the aim to improve physical and mental wellbeing and give opportunities for individual development. The project is designed to reach out to specific groups identified as the most inactive including female, disabled and vulnerable students with emotional and mental health issues.

A range of initiatives will be introduced over the next two years using the funding from Sport England. The money will be used to introduce campaigns designed to increase physical activity, to make links with local community organisations to set up new opportunities for students to get involved in and to provide new and interesting physical activity opportunities in college before and during the college day. 

Around one in five college students are inactive and many come from groups that have lower socio-economic status or from ethnic groups that are less likely to be active. Colleges in the programme will target these groups specifically to reduce the activity gap between them and their student peers.

Mike Diaper, Executive Director of Community Sport said:

“We are delighted to offer Chesterfield College National Lottery funding to help get students active. College is a crucial time in a young person’s development. It is often the first time that activity is not a compulsory part of their study programme and therefore all too many young people become inactive. This funding will allow colleges to be innovative in addressing the needs and desires of their students to help embed activity in their lifestyle in college and for years to come.”

Will Hughes, Healthy Lifestyle Lead, from Chesterfield College said:

“The funding from Sport England will allow us to offer an exciting programme of activities designed to appeal to students who might not get involved with the traditional sport offer available in college. We will be able to establish new initiatives which focus on wellbeing and making small changes to daily routine which could make a huge difference to students’ lives. We know that there is a direct correlation between physical and mental wellbeing and academic and individual development so this funding will allow us to make a big impact.”