Motivations and Barriers to Recreation Participation in Canada: Recommendations for the Sector




Slawuta, Stephen

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Recreation provide Canadians with numerous direct and indirect benefits. Providing these opportunities and services (e.g. facilities and programs) represents a significant cost to local and regional governments and achieving the greatest return on investment occurs when as many residents are as active (benefitting) as possible. Better understanding what motivates and limits or prevents participation can help ensure facilities and programming are most effective. This project reviewed previous literature and analyzed survey data from 54 different jurisdictions across Canada to comprehensively explore motivators and barriers, contrasting differences based on service area (community or region) population. Notably, lack of time and facility hours appear to be key barriers along with affordability. Numerous social and inter-personal motivators drive participation and seem to differ based on the size of community in which individuals reside. The project culminated in six recommendations for the sector.



Recreation, Parks, Community development, Barriers, Motivators, Physical activity, leisure