Our Research

The work of the Youth Sport Trust is insight led. We use compelling research and evidence to provide evidence of need and demonstrate the power of PE, sport and physical activity to transform the health, happiness and wellbeing of young people.

Work with our Research team:

  • Collaborate with us - we work with other organisation to help extend the reach and focus of our work
  • Commission us - we deliver bespoke research services for other organisations who are looking to conduct work which aligns with our mutual goals
  • Latest Opportunities - we regularly invite proposals from researchers via open tender to help us evaluate our programmes  


Scroll down to view our latest research and insight.

Girls Active National Reports

These reports summarise responses to the Girls Active Survey that pupils aged from 7 to 18 completed between March and June 2023.

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01 Jul 2019

Transition: Desktop Research

This desktop research explored the position of competitive sport during young people’s transition from primary to secondary school. It was informed by a combination of activities, including a desk-based review of secondary evidence, a review of School Games data, consultations with key individuals and insight from young people.

01 May 2019

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.

01 Mar 2019

Alternative Competition

In 2018/19, the Youth Sport Trust, funded by the Sport England National Lottery, launched a pilot project to evaluate the feasibility of conducting alternative competition formats through the School Games Organiser network with the overarching aim of increasing young people’s participation in sport and physical activity.

07 Feb 2019

Active in Mind Evaluation

Active in Mind offered peer mentoring support to young people experiencing mental wellbeing issues as well as creating innovative sport and physical activity opportunities for a targeted group of young people. This infographic highlights the impact of the project.

01 Dec 2018

Play Unified

Inspired by a simple principle: training together and playing together is a quick path to understanding, acceptance and friendship, breaking down the barriers that exist for people with intellectual disabilities. This research was conducted in collaboration with Free Thought Research.

01 Nov 2018

Girls Active 2018

This report summarises responses to the Girls Active Stepping Up for Change survey that girls and boys aged 7 to 11-years-old completed in the 2017-18 academic year. Overall, 5,454 responses were received across 122 schools (4,430 girls and 1,024 boys). This action research follows the Girls Active secondary school research released in 2017.

15 Oct 2018

Mentally Healthy Schools

The Mentally Healthy Schools pilot was commissioned by the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership to explore new ways of preventing mental health issues in young people through school-based interventions

01 Nov 2017

Girls Active 2017

This document provides headline statistics on quantitative study into girls’ and boys’ experience of physical activity and PE in secondary schools.

01 Jan 2017

Engaging Girls

Public Health England commissioned the Youth Sport Trust and Loughborough University to conduct action research, informed by the findings of a literature review, which considered what works to increase physical activity and decrease sedentary behaviour in girls aged 8-10 years.