Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Medical professionals should prescribe sport and physical activity, says European Commission | news

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The prescription of physical activity by medical professionals and increased funding to support the inclusion of refugees are two of several recommendations made in a new grassroots sport report published by the European Commission.

Grassroots Sport – Shaping Europe was delivered by the Commission’s high level group – which contained EuropeActive president Sir Graham Watson – to commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Tibor Navracsics to provide ideas to develop grassroots sport within wider life and “strengthen the network of sports clubs”.

Key recommendations included using grassroots sport to positively impact other areas of European society, such as health, social inclusion and the economy.

Of the former, the report suggested that member states of the European Union should encourage medical professionals to prescribe physical activity “in place of, or in addition to” medication, while the European Union should put money in appropriate sport and physical activity initiatives through its EU Health Funding Programme.

As reported by Sports Management in March, the report also prioritised funding sporting initiatives that help to integrate refugees during a period of mass-migration, as part of a number of social inclusion recommendations.

To facilitate integration, member states are being asked to organise physical activity opportunities specifically for migrant people and to design multi-cultural grassroots sport events.

In terms of using grassroots sport to contribute to Europe’s economy, the report recommended that the European Commission “considers the positive economic impact and multiplier effect” to grassroots sport when allocating funds.

In addition, it suggested that member nations should consider incentivising participation through “tax reductions and subsidies” – something the UK government is currently considering through potential corporation tax cuts.

To read the full report, click here.

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