Olympics aren't inspiring people to play more sport
Published 25 June 2012
The Olympics may be coming to home turf in just a few weeks but the biggest sporting event in the world isn't enough to get more people in Britain playing sport, a report suggests.
According to a new report by Theos and Sports Think Tank, just 4% agreed strongly with the statement "I'm inspired to play more sport at the moment because of the London 2012 Olympics".
A staggering 80% disagreed with the statement.
The report argues that the fun is being taken out of the Games by the rhetoric of politicians about the impact of sport on health, values and morality, the economy and even peace.
It also claims that some of the political assertions about the benefits of sport are "misleading".
Although the ComRes poll found that most people (59%) agreed with politicians' claims that the Olympics would be good for the British economy, the report's authors argue that "no recent Olympic Games has produced proven significant economic benefits to the host country or city".
They say that the balance between private and public investment is often misrepresented, and that private investment in the London 2012 Games is likely to contribute only a quarter of total costs.
The poll found agreement among people that the Games have been costly to members of the public, with 64% of those surveyed saying that the taxpayer had contributed too much. In London, where taxpayers have contributed more, that figure rose to 70%.
Andy Reed, director of Sports Think Tank said, “Those of us who love sport need to remember to be cautious about placing unrealistic political, economic and social demands on it and relearn how to value it for it’s own sake.”