Girls Active 2019

As part of the Girls Active programmes run by the Youth Sport Trust, girls and boys in primary and secondary schools are asked to complete an online survey. The survey is distributed by teachers to pupils in their school. This report combines the data from all young people involved across two academic years 2017/18 and 2018/19.

Young people understand the importance of an active lifestyle

  • Girls say they do less PE and the amount of PE they do decreases throughout the school years
  • Boys are more likely to be active both inside and outside of school - nearly a quarter of secondary aged girls (23%) do not do any sport or physical activity outside of school
  • Girls in year 10 are most likely to be concerned about body image and have negative feelings about the way they look
  • Girls who are coaches, leaders, administrators or organisers are more likely to feel confident, happier and like taking part in physical activity, PE and learning at school


  • Girls in KS4 are less likely to feel that their school and parents encourage them to take part in sport or physical activity
  • Girls are less likely to enjoy competition than boys, however, competition generally does not emerge as a big motivating factor for girls or boys to be physically active. The value placed on competition decreases throughout the school years.


  • For secondary aged pupils, boys were more than twice as likely to say they have no barriers to sport and physical activity than girls
  • For girls from a BAME background, having their period is the biggest barrier to participating in sport and physical activity
  • Confidence remains a continual barrier for girls
  • The largest barrier that secondary aged girls experience to participating in sport or physical activity outside of school is time, with 26% of girls saying that they do not have time because of their school work.

Girls Active 2019

Here you can download the full report.

Published on 1 May 2019