In light of recent reports, schools must be realistic in that physical activity recommendations cannot be met through curriculum PE alone. However, extracurricular PE and school sport has the potential to further promote physical activity in adolescents. Consequently, the Welsh Government, UK, proposed through its Climbing Higher strategy (2006) for secondary school children to achieve 60 minutes of physical activity a day. This was implemented through Sport Wales and the 5×60 scheme.
This study aimed to examine the experiences of the 5×60 officers responsible for implementing the program, with a view to gain an understanding of the barriers associated with increasing participation in physical activity. Officers from 14 unitary authorities across Wales were interviewed using a socioecological approach that considered the impact of: personal behaviors, physical environment, social environment, and policy.
Participants reported a number of challenges affecting the delivery of the program, including: availability of facilities, lack of support from senior management, time, and conflict with PE staff.
This study suggests that current methods used by personnel to facilitate extracurricular school sport may not be the most appropriate, and future direction should consider the place and contribution of physical activity to young people’s lives.