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The Growing Trends in Physical Activity workshop at the MOVE Congress 2015 was moderated by Dr. Niamh Murphy, Waterford Institute of Technology, Ireland, who started the session with a pressing question for international sport: Can major events be part of the strategy of NGOs to attract inactive people to sport and physical activity offers? The speakers who followed gave specific examples of successful nation and local initiatives from Denmark, Colombia and Iceland.

The first speaker, Jacob Larsen, from the Danish Athletics Federation touched on sustainability and social responsibility of mass sporting events and how mass running events have become game-changers. His example of running events, where professional runners run alongside amateurs, was an illustration of the high numbers of participants who are interested in participating. Over 90% of the participants stated that they would be interested in taking part again, which indicated the sustainability aspect to the event. He pointed out that such events also gather large numbers of spectators and one of the goals is often to turn the spectators into participants.

The second speaker, Oscar Ruiz, from the District Institute of Sports and Recreation in Bogota, Colombia, presented a successful example of mass cycling event “Ciclovia” where each Sunday the city centre is closed to cars and only open to people who cycle and walk. This way the public spaces are reserved at a set time each week that is dedicated to the promotion of active lifestyles. The initiative increases opportunities for citizens to be active and at the same time contributes to environmental causes as well as providing savings for the local government. This low cost, immediate benefit approach gathers more than 1,500,000 participants in Bogota every Sunday!

The third speaker, Sabína Steinunn Halldórsdóttir, National Coordinator for MOVE Week in Iceland, presented the initiative she created for this year’s MOVE Week in Iceland. The idea is quite simple and uses existing infrastructure and a common physical activity practices in the country: swimming. In Iceland there is a very strong culture of swimming, which is inclusive and accessible. The idea was to organise a friendly competition between the different municipalities to see which one would swim the most kilometers. More than 4000 people participated and swam 4000 km! The physical activity aspect was not the only important one in this case; it was very essential to have a social aspect to the activity too – being part of something bigger helped motivate the participants.

The conclusion of the session was that it is important to foster social innovation to add value to bigger events (such as making the participants feel like they are part of a bigger goal), to collect data to carry out impact assessments and to focus on the social dynamics of different sporting activities.

 

The Growing Trends in Physical Activity workshop at the MOVE Congress 2015 was moderated by Dr. Niamh Murphy, Waterford Institute of Technology, Ireland, who started the session with a pressing question for international sport: Can major events be part of the strategy of NGOs to attract inactive people to sport and physical activity offers? The […]

When we talk about inactivity we often refer to children and adolescents, knowing that 4 out of 5 European youngsters are not active enough. Meanwhile, we rarely think of elderly people aged 60+ who, willingly or not, are often subject to problems associated with inactivity. One of the MOVE Congress workshops was dedicated to the […]

At the MOVE Congress 2015, which took place from 5-7 November, Copenhagen’s popular street sport facility, GAME, turned into arena for innovative practices that are driving the global grassroots sport movement forward. The event, organised by the International Sport and Culture Association (ISCA), is one of the few conferences in the world that focuses solely […]

The MOVE Congress 2015 concluded with a special study tour offering an exclusive view from inside to new sport and physical activity facilities in Copenhagen. Oliver Vanges from the Danish Foundation for Culture and Sports Facilities (Lokale og Anlægsfonden) presented new trends in planning and development of facilities for sport and culture, and followed the […]

The MOVE Congress 2015 proved to be a real event-on-the-move, far away from any “classical” congress concept. With a wide variety of options to get into the action through street sport and spontaneous dances, visits to innovative facilities and plenty of time for networking, there was more to this year’s MOVE Congress than the traditional […]

A workshop discussing new trends in physical activity was held during the second day of MOVE Congress 2015 focusing on the topic “Running across the world – why are recreational runners part of one of the fastest growing markets and what can clubs do to recapture their interest?” The workshop was moderated by Rebecca Steele, […]

The plenary session of the MOVE Congress 2015 on 6 November aimed to connect the data with the doers in physical activity promotion. In other words, grassroots stakeholders in physical activity are the mobilisers who can deliver compelling data to policy-makers, provide the solutions and ultimately make a difference. But often they are lacking the […]

The MOVE Congress 2015 opened in Copenhagen City Hall tonight with 200 delegates from five continents being welcomed by Copenhagen Mayor of Culture and Leisure, Carl Christian Ebbesen, and three interconnected presentations drawing inspiration from bestselling business author Simon Sinek*: Do you know your why? (by Mark Lowther from Cardiff Metropolitan University’s School of Sport), […]

Join us at the 9th MOVE Congress in Budapest, Hungary, 16-18 October 2019.