Reports & Insights

First wave of 2021 US Sports Participation Reports released

First wave of 2021 US Sports Participation Reports released

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Reports & Insights

The Sports and Fitness Industry Association (SFIA), in partnership with Sports Marketing Surveys, has released the first wave of 2021 single sport participation reports.


Earlier in the year, the topline data revealed that America was a more active country than ever in 2021, with activity up 7.8% since 2016 and almost 17 million more people involved in sport. In particular, lower rates of inactivity among 18-34 year-olds helped drive up participation.


35 reports are now available, covering team sports, racquet sports, and action sports.


Reports on individual sports, and fitness activities will follow. Water sports and outdoor sports, two categories that saw the largest annual increases overall, are also still to be released. In total, 90 reports will be available for purchase.


Each report provides a detailed analysis and breakdown of participation by various demographics for the specific sport or activity. This includes data on participation as defined by gender, participation frequency, age, geographic region, market size area, income, education level, cross-sport/activity participation, and new for 2022, ethnicity. The pickleball report, for example, shows exactly which demographics are driving  the participation surge of 39% in the last two years in America’s fastest growing sport.


Even greater depth can be accessed by accessing the reports through SMS’ interactive dashboard service. The dashboard gives you the power to cut and analyze the data as you see fit, honing in on certain sub-groups that may be of interest, and easily comparing sport by sport, and against six years of trend data.


Every year the reports, whether accessed via PDF or dashboard, help hundreds of businesses generate investment, target spending, tailor product design, and coordinate marketing efforts.


The single sport reports (in PDF format) cost $99 for SFIA members and are also available to non-members for $295. Dashboard prices are available on request.


SMS USA President Keith Storey highlighted the value of the data and especially the dashboard access. “These reports have always been and continue to be essential for businesses involved in sport. For a low cost, they provide hugely valuable baseline data to support strategic decision making. And, thanks to the dashboard service, customers can now take this even further and create tailored participation data to support pitches, reports, and board level action.”


The full list of available reports is:

  • Badminton
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Bicycling (BMX)
  • Bicycling (Mountain/Non-Paved Surface)
  • Boardsailing/Windsurfing
  • Cheerleading
  • Football (Flag)
  • Football (Tackle)
  • Football (Touch)
  • Gymnastics
  • Ice Hockey
  • Lacrosse
  • Paintball
  • Pickleball
  • Racquetball
  • Roller Hockey
  • Rugby
  • Skateboarding
  • Soccer (Indoor)
  • Soccer (Outdoor)
  • Softball (Fast Pitch)
  • Softball (Slow-Pitch)
  • Squash
  • Surfing
  • Swimming on a Team
  • Table Tennis
  • Track and Field
  • Ultimate Frisbee
  • Volleyball (Beach/Sand)
  • Volleyball (Court)
  • Volleyball (Grass)
  • Wakeboarding
  • Water Skiing
  • Wrestling

To find out more about joining the SFIA, please contact Alex Kerman, at


For more information about how sports participation research can benefit your business, or to schedule a demonstration of the dashboard, contact Keith Storey, President of SMS USA, at

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