Home > Insight and Funding > Active Lives Survey – Adults

Active Lives Survey – Adults

The Active Lives Survey asks people aged 16 and over across England about the sport and physical activities they take part in.

Sussex leads the way with good news for physical activity levels: Sport England releases the results of their most recent Active Lives survey (2022/23).

Sport England has released their latest round of data recording the levels of physical activity that adults (16+) do. The Active Lives headlines (found here) from 2023 suggests there is some good news, with a “Long-term increase in activity levels”. However, these gains are not seen for all people. The report underlines that many longstanding inequalities remain, with women, those from lower socio-economic groups and Black and Asian people some of the groups still less likely to be active than others.
The report breaks down very specific characteristics, including what has been reported around Place, Age, Gender, Socio-economic groups, Ethnicity, Disabled people and people with long-term health conditions.
Historic data tells us that the older a person gets the less likely they are to be physically active. However, among some of the positive headlines we can see activity levels continuing to grow among older adults over the past 12 months.
The report shows “Activity levels for those aged 55+ are the highest they’ve been since records began, with those aged over 75 particularly driving this trend. Currently, 42.8% of people aged over 75 are physically active compared to just 33.4% between November 2015 and November 2016.”Among the positive stories, we see many trends for the better. Not just improving people’s physical health, but bringing with it environmental, social, and attitudinal benefits.

Giving people choices allowing them to take more environmentally sustainable forms of transport has helped over a million more adults be active. A 2.1% increase from last year was seen with walking or cycling for travel.
Furthermore, the number of people playing team sports continues to increase and is now at the highest level seen for six years.
Attitudes towards sport and physical activity are back in line with four years ago and indicate recovery following the coronavirus pandemic. This helps to understand what influences behaviour change, with questions around Capability, Opportunity and Motivation.
When it comes to looking at Sussex’s data, we see some great news with Brighton & Hove being top of the table; the most active Local Authority, with 79% of the population being active. More detail will be released in the coming weeks, when we will give a full breakdown of the local data.
Sport England understands the need for additional support for certain groups. As highlighted in the Uniting the Movement strategy and to demonstrate their commitment to tackling these inequalities they’ve announced details of a new £160m Movement Fund – which will replace a number of smaller programmes including the Small Grants and Active Together funds, making their funding easier to access than ever before and ensuring investment is targeted where it can make the biggest difference.
If you would like to know more about your specific area, or the groups you work with, please get in touch with Active Sussex’s Insight Officer, Mac Ince.

Please note Public Health England (PHE) include gardening and only include data for those aged 19+ so different activity rates are shown in the PHE data.

The Active Lives Survey asks people aged 16 and over across England about the sport and physical activities they take part in. The first survey was completed between November 2015 and November 2016. Further results are published twice a year.

Watch our video for an overview of the previous results for Sussex for 2020-21.

You can view the results in each Sussex local authority and compare with the county and national results below.

Visit our Inactivity Maps page to view the activity levels at local authority and neighbourhood level.

Adults Active Lives Survey Results in Sussex

Inactivity at neighbourhood level

Active Sussex have estimated inactivity levels at neighbourhood level. This data is indicative rather than definitive. To receive this data in more detail, and to discuss how to use this data, please contact us on the details at the bottom of this page.

You can also view this data on our Inactivity Maps page.

Inactivity at MSOA level

Sport England have produced small area estimates of activity at MSOA level. The table below shows inactivity at MSOA level in Sussex. You can filter by local authority and priority group. Hover over each bar to view the proportion of older people, people with disabilities and long-term health conditions, and the deprivation of each area. The wards covered by the MSOA are shown to give you an indication of where this is in your local area.

You can also view this data on our Inactivity Maps page.

Skip to content