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Evaluation of sports development as a policy initiative for the benefit of the society

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  1. Introduction
  2. Social inclusion
  3. Stereotypes of athletes from sociological ideologies
  4. Conditions in areas of social and economic deprivation
  5. The lack of successful role models
  6. Stereotypical and sexist views about athletics
  7. Other barriers to participation
  8. Policy setting and the process
  9. The policy making cycle
  10. Problems to overcome
  11. Conclusion
  12. Reference list

There is no denying the fact that sports contribute significantly to the development of the society on the whole. Sports education is considered to be the integral part of education. The role of sport development officer assumes significance since he is responsible for planning, implementation and ensuring quality. There has been a view that sports must be for all for the larger benefit of the society.

It is important to understand the policy framework which governs the issue of sports development. The inclusion of sports is seen as beneficial to the society in the long run since the health care costs have gone up considerably and sports development can help to moderate the damage to a certain extent.
While government's focus seems to be on reduction of spiraling health care costs, there has been demand from pressure groups to include sports development on a larger scale in society. Every successful policy has three vital ingredients to succeed; they are initiation, formulation of the right policy and proper implementation of the policy.

[...] Barriers to participation include: Stereotypes of athletes from sociological ideologies, such as women being inferior; religion and cultural differences; disability and the social constraints for disabled people. For some children athletics is running and usually for fairly long distances. Many children dislike this because the feeling of fatigue is uncomfortable. Compared to sports such as football, athletics receives little broadcasting. There seem to be two renowned competitions in athletics, the Olympics and the Commonwealth Games. These competitions do get TV coverage, but only every four years. [...]

[...] Other sources of funding can come from the New Opportunities Fund which is for urban regeneration and sports complex's can benefit from this. The DCMS will allocate funding to certain organizations if they meet criteria. They must provide a clear strategy for participation and excellence, and, commit themselves to emphasizing social inclusion and fairness. Other sources of funding can come from the exchequer, the DfES, partnerships and commercialization such as TV coverage. The DCMS has stated that 5-10% of TV revenue must be put back into grass roots sports. [...]

[...] Alternative measures could be offered such as offering ?women only' days so that Hindu women could participate in shorts and a T-shirt without the fear of Hindu men seeing their bare flesh. This has to be community specific ensuring that the policy designed must be done for each separate community. Since 1995 when the Disability Discrimination Act was introduced, all sports facilities must provide access for disabled people. This has enabled disabled people the opportunity to participate in physical activity but has not broken down other barriers such as transport to and from the venue, stereotypical views, and prejudice, from other members of the community. [...]

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