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Legacy effects of London 2012 'already visible'

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Image: Rowing has already benefited from London 2012

The London 2012 Games have had an immediate impact on the UK's sports sector - from grassroot levels right up to elite sport.

Evidence suggests that sports clubs, swimming pools and leisure centres - as well as national governing bodies - have seen an increase in people asking for advice on how to get involved in organised sport.

Swimming, cycling and rowing clubs have all experienced increased interest due to Team GB securing medals, while less prominent sports - including archery - have also benefited from Olympic media coverage.

British Cycling president Brian Cookson has predicted that Bradley Wiggins becoming the most decorated British Olympian of all time - as well as his historic Tour de France victory - will raise the profile of the sport throughout the UK - and result in more people taking up cycling (To read more on the impact of cyclist Bradley Wiggins' heroics on British Cycling, click here).

Meanwhile, British Rowing experienced an enormous surge in traffic to its website with a tenfold increase in the regular number of unique visitors following Helen Glover and Heather Stanning's historic victory in the women's pair at Eton Dorney.

More than 5,500 people used the search facility on the website to find their nearest rowing club on the day of the Olympic win, far exceeding the highest figure recorded during the Beijing Games.

Across the UK rowing clubs were receiving applications for 'learn to row' courses within 10 minutes of the first gold medal being won.

To support clubs and centres in capitalising on the increased interest, Sport England has launched its digital legacy service, 'spogo' (www.spogo.co.uk), in partnership with the Fitness Industry Association (FIA).

The customer-facing service aims to make searching and finding physical activities as simple as other consumer-friendly online services.

Spogo is designed to make it easy for consumers to find the closest facility in which they can take part in a sport they have an interest in.

The booking engine can be linked to a facility's own membership management system, which will establish a seamless transaction process to drive new members.

To find out more about spogo, read more from FIA CEO David Stalker in the August issue of Health Club Management by clicking here.

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Evidence suggests that sports clubs, swimming pools and leisure centres - as well as national governing bodies - have seen an increase in people asking for advice on how to get involved in organised sport.
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