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Active Universities attracts 46,000 students in first year

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More than 46,000 university students have got involved in sport in the first year of Sport England's Active Universities campaign.

The three-year, £8m project is part of work to tackle the issue of drop-off in sports participation that sees many young people giving up sport in their late teens and early twenties.

The first results from 40 funded projects across 49 universities have now been revealed and show how a range of sports have benefitted from an increase in people taking part.

Lacrosse is one of the sports to see a radical increase in playing numbers - 2,424 students in 39 universities have taken up the sport through the initiative.

Paddleboarding and softball were also among those less-known sports to benefit.

Katherine Clarke from the Coventry University project, where korfball was among the sports on offer, said: "Generally the participants in alternative sports have been more committed and attended more regularly.

"We feel this is down to more committed participants of traditional sports already playing the sport in a more structured environment, such as the university sports clubs."

Sport England's director of community sport, Mike Diaper, said: "It's fantastic that so many students are taking the opportunity to make sport a regular part of their lives.

"In the past too many students who didn't make it onto university teams had been lost to sport altogether. Young adults who are still playing sport when they leave university are likely to stick with it for life, so this is a good investment in the future."

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More than 46,000 university students have got involved in sport in the first year of Sport England's Active Universities campaign.
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