A Look at the State of Play in the U.S.

The Aspen Institute Sports & Society Program released a new report, State of Play: 2016, an annual snapshot of how well stakeholders are serving children and communities through sports. The 21-page report is the latest resource offered by the program's Project Play initiative, which provides thought leadership to make sport accessible and affordable to all kids.  

ASPEN State of Play

Among the key findings:

  • The percentage of youth physically "active to a healthy level"  (25 minutes, three times a week and CDC's 60 minute daily national recommendation; see appendix b in report) through sports fell again last year, even as sport participation among 6 to 12 year-olds rose;
  • Federal support for recreation infrastructure grew, while gaps in access to sport in low-income areas became more apparent;
  • Major sport organizations rallied around promoting multi-sport play, as the number of team sports played by the average child fell; and 
  • Most coaches are still not trained in safety and other key areas. 

Download the Report

Developments in Physical Literacy

The 2016 reports also highlights key accomplishments in physical literacy (see page 4) that have taken place this past year. It proposes that youth sport providers and stakeholders from other sectors collaborate to help every child in America be physically literate by age 12.

SHAPE America was part of a working group convened by the Aspen Institute defining  physical literacy as the ability, confidence, and desire to be physically active for a life.

Learn how it has been incorporated into SHAPE America's National Standards & Grade-Level Outcomes for K-12 Physical Education.