Research Report: What Sways Women to Play Sport? – Motivations & Influencers

Published 2017

“In the summer we have to do a 1.5 km run and I hate it and want to quit, but thinking about that women who climbed Mount Everest, who didn’t quit, makes you want to finish.”  Secondary school student, aged 12

Group of women in casual clothes riding bikes

Executive Summary

This report uses a behaviour change model to identify opportunities for sport to make better use of influence figures in order to get more women and girls participating.

Report Contents:

  • What do we mean by influencers?
  • Behavioural science concepts.
  • What do ‘Sway Factors’ mean?
  • Case studies.

KEY FINDINGS

  • The roles that families, peers, local communities, specific sports communities and culture/society generally play varies at different times in a woman’s life and can include both triggers and barriers to her sporting participation.
  • The behavioural model identifies six key ‘spheres of influence’ and shows sway factors that affect women’s sporting behaviour.

RECOMMENDATIONS

Influencers can be anyone and everyone

  • It is not just those who are ‘sporty’ who influence others to participate in sport.

Influencers impact participation behaviour

  • Influencers impact participation behaviour in different ways and in different contexts.
  • A multi-pronged approach is required – the actions of different types of influencers should complement one another across the various contextual layers.

The new model of influence can be used to impact participation behaviour

  • The ‘sway factors’ are complimentary and work best in combination with each other; each factor becomes more transformative at a different point along the behaviour change journey and then continues to impact participation positively.

Women’s influencers evolve over time

  • Women are diverse and their influencers are strongly affected by the needs associated with particular points along their sports participation behavioural journey and their specific life stage.
  • There is a need to identify where and when women are becoming disengaged with sport and where influencers can positively impact behaviour for women at different stages.

KEY PARTNERS

RECOMMENDED LINKS AND RESOURCES

  1. Reach into Coaching website

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