Active People Survey shows growth in key areas for rowing in England

Sport England’s Active People Survey shows female participation in rowing has grown by more than 50 per cent since London 2012


(Photo: Iain Weir)

The number of women inspired to take up rowing has risen by more than 50 per cent since the London 2012 Olympic Games, according to the results of Sport England’s latest Active People Survey (APS10).

The home Games saw the first ever Olympic gold medals for British female rowers, with athletes such as Helen Glover, Heather Stanning and Katherine Grainger enhancing their status as role models for women in sport.

Glover and Stanning repeated their golden feat this summer in Rio de Janeiro, with the success of Team GB and ParalympicsGB in Brazil correlating with a nearly five per cent increase in female participation year-on-year on home soil, as 33,000 women now row every week.

The survey also showed that British Rowing has built on the legacy of London 2012, with monthly participation figures up six per cent since the world’s best rowers competed at Eton Dorney at the Olympics and Paralympics four years ago.

The nine medals won between Team GB and ParalympicsGB to top the medal tables at Rio 2016 leaves British Rowing hopeful that the number of people taking up the sport in the coming months will continue to rise.

Increased participation numbers have led to more people entering British Rowing’s major championships in recent years, with all four British Rowing national championships seeing an increase in entries this year. The upcoming British Rowing Indoor Championship has attracted nearly 1,900 race entries – a new record figure for the event – showing the passion for rowing, both on and off the water, across the country.

Andy Parkinson, CEO of British Rowing, said: “To see participation increasing in these key areas is a positive sign for British Rowing. Our team works hard across the country to ensure that everyone with a desire to row has the best possible opportunity to give it a go.

“With some inspirational performances from our rowers at the Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer, I’m sure we will see more people getting into the sport over the next 12 months.”

In addition to the work supporting on-water rowing, British Rowing has also launched its new indoor rowing strategy ‘Go Row Indoor’ at our inaugural Indoor Rowing Forum, which took place on 1 December. The strategy is designed to encourage more people to get fit by using rowing machines, whether individually in the gym, in group participation sessions, or in competitions like the Indoor Championships.

Following the results of the Active People Survey, British Rowing awaits with anticipation the release of Sport England’s Active Lives data, which is currently being gathered using a more robust methodology.