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SRA calls for disability sport to be made a priority

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The Sport and Recreation Alliance (SRA) has called for disability sport to be made a priority after revealing that less than a third of UK sport clubs cater for disabled people.

The Alliance's nationwide sports club survey - the biggest ever conducted in the UK - shows that while clubs are keen in theory to provide for disabled people, many are struggling to provide the basic equipment and infrastructure.

Only 32 per cent of the UK's sports clubs have access to appropriate equipment for disabled people to participate fully in sporting activities, compared to 89 per cent that have access to appropriate equipment for non-disabled people.

There is room to improve in providing trained coaches too, as only 8 per cent of volunteers and staff at UK sports clubs have received training to amend and adapt their sport to make it more inclusive.

Commenting on the new figures, Andy Reed, chair of SRA, said: "A big culture change still needs to take place in many mainstream sports clubs.

"Investment is welcome and needed, but it's clear that lack of trained staff and appropriate equipment are also glaring issues - and these things can be remedied far more easily than is often perceived.

"Most clubs rely on volunteers to survive, and they are struggling to meet demands as it is. But there is a lot of existing support and funding out there if people are proactive and seek it.

"Coaches and volunteers often need to take on just a few extra skills - as they would if they were learning to teach a new ability level - to be equipped to bring the best out of disabled participants."

More than 600,000 disabled adults are currently members of a sports club, while a total of 1.67m disabled adults play sport at least once a week.

To read more about SRA's club survey, click here.

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The Sport and Recreation Alliance (SRA) has called for disability sport to be made a priority after revealing that less than a third of UK sport clubs cater for disabled people.
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