Participation: The latest AusPlay survey results

Sport Australia has released its latest AusPlay survey results, for the year July 2019-June 2020.

Bushwalking ranking – Nationally, in 2019-2020 bushwalking (/hiking) is in the top six of the 133 activities with regard to participation and remains in the top seven in WA, only two places behind cycling.

Participation – 7.4% (1.5 million) of Australia’s adult population participated in bushwalking compared to 12.5% in cycling and 1.6% in mountain biking. In WA, bushwalking participation was a little lower, at 5.8% (~122,500) of adults.

Long-term increase in participation –The longer term data shows an overall increase of 2.4% for adult participation in bushwalking over the past 20 years compared to a 5.6% increase in cycling and a smaller 0.4% increase in mountain biking. However over the past 5 years, participation in bushwalking has increased by 3.7% and cycling and running/athletics more slowly, by 2.4-2.6%.

Gender participation – In WA, as previously there is still almost equal gender (15 and over) participation in bushwalking between females (49%) and males (51%). Nationally the ratio is female 54.7% : male 45.3%, contrasting with an activity such as mountain biking where the ratio is 19% female : 81% male.

Non-sports versus Sports activities – Nationally in 2019-2020, around 30% of adults participated in non-sports related activities compared to 17.5% in sport-related activities.

The AusPlay Focus report provides some early indications of what the impact of COVID-19 might be on participation in sport and physical activity including bushwalking.  Interestingly nationally 31.6% of bushwalkers who participated in the week before being surveyed bushwalked more than usual due to COVID-19 impacts.

See the AusPlay National and State results (AusPlay Focus report and Data Tables) released 30 October 2020.

(Posted 30 Oct.2020.)

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