Comparing Apples with Oranges: Participation in Arts & Sport

Did you know?...

In 2010, an estimated 14.4 million persons aged 15 years and over, or 82.3% of the population living in occupied private dwellings, participated at least once annually in physical activity for exercise, recreation or sport. This is the total participation rate in any physical activity. The weekly participation rate is 69%, regular participation rate (more than three times per week) is 47.7%, and the frequent participation rate (more than five times per week) is 28%

An estimated 93% of the population participates in the arts.  The figure for creative participation is 40%

For music, the total participation rate is 62%, while the creative participation rate is 15%


The median frequency of participation in any physical activity was 2.5 times per week

Australians "intentionally" listen to music every 1-2 days (the highest receptive participation rate of any artform),

The total participation rate in organised physical activity (organised by a fitness centre, sporting club, workplace, school, fee-based physical activities etc) was 40.0%; the total participation rate in club-based physical activity was 25.7%.

We don't really know what proportion of those 15% of Australians making music are involved in "organised" or "club-based" activity.  if only they included that in the survey!

Both surveys are for Australians over 15 years of age, and for approximately the same period (not exactly), although these surveys use different methods and are difficult to compare.  However, it looks like approximately the same amount of Australians are participating in the arts (including "receptive", which is non-active) and in sport (the "at least once annual" rate) - 93% and 82.3% respectively.   Also, approximately the same number of Australians (40%) are participating creatively in the arts (doing it) and in "organised physical activity".


Participation in Exercise, Recreation and Sport Survey, 2010


More Than Bums On Seats, 2010