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Rising Sports Fees Decreases Kids Participation in Australia

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It’s no secret that Aussie love sports and despite the scandals in Australian sports this year, we are still proud of our national sports teams. While funding for national teams isn’t a problem, it’s the grassroots level sports teams that suffer. In particular, it’s the junior sports leagues that are affected the most.

Recently, Craig Foster, retired football player and SBS sports analyst criticised the rising registration fees for sports clubs in Australia. Research showed that there is a great divide between families that can afford the costs and others that cannot. Without factoring in transport costs, on average families are paying more than AU$1 100 to play a sport for just one season.

Along with research, a recent survey found that cost is no doubt a barrier to kids participating in sports and one of the participants explained an evident paradox. The parent said: “as a nation, we are encouraged to be involved in sport. However, for some families, the cost of such involvement is prohibited.” So, kids are then left to watch sport rather than actually play sport.

kids sports and gambling

Australian Kids Associate Sports with Gambling

While the rising costs of sports create a barrier for kids there is another growing concern – Australian kids now associate watching sport with gambling. According to a study by Deakin University, “three out of four kids who watch sports strongly associate sports with wagering money on the result of the game.” This is attributed to the rise in online gambling sites, mobile betting apps and their popularity among Aussies.

Data obtained from the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation (VRGF) found that 75% of children who watch sports believe that gambling is actually normal and in addition can name sports betting companies!

To combat the growing problem, the VRGF has created a “Love the Game – Not the Odds” initiative. The initiative is aimed at educating children and parents on the harmful effects of gambling.

So, is it safer to let kids watch sport or play sport? Keep it locked to our blog page for updates and other gambling related news.