The impact of free access to swimming pools on children’s participation in swimming. A comparative regression discontinuity study



Higgerson, J, Halliday, E, Ortiz-Nunez, A and Barr, B ORCID: 0000-0002-4208-9475
(2019) The impact of free access to swimming pools on children’s participation in swimming. A comparative regression discontinuity study. Journal of Public Health, 41 (2). 214 - 221.

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Abstract

Objective Investigating the extent to which providing children with free swimming access during school holidays increased participation in swimming and whether this effect differed according to the socioeconomic deprivation of the neighbourhoods in which children lived. Setting A highly disadvantaged local authority (LA) in North West England. Intervention Provision of children with free swimming during the summer holidays. Outcome measures Number of children swimming, and the number of swims, per 100 population in 2014. Design Comparative regression discontinuity investigating the extent to which participation rates amongst children aged 5–15 were greater in the intervention LA compared to a similar control LA. We estimated the differential effect of the intervention across five groups, defined by quintiles of area deprivation. Results Free swimming during the summer holidays was associated with an additional 6% of children swimming (95% CI: 4–9%) and an additional 33 swims per 100 children per year (95% CI: 21–44). The effects were greatest in areas with intermediate levels of deprivation (quintiles 3 and 4) within this deprived LA. Conclusion Providing free facilities for children in disadvantaged areas is likely to increase swimming participation and may help reduce inequalities in physical activity.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: inequalities, leisure, physical activity, policy, pricing
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 17 Feb 2020 15:15
Last Modified: 25 Jan 2022 03:10
DOI: 10.1093/pubmed/fdy079
Open Access URL: https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/en/pu...
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URI: https://livrepository.liverpool.ac.uk/id/eprint/3042762