China makes progress in promoting extensive fitness-for-all activities

(People's Daily Online) 15:32, March 29, 2024

Citizens do physical exercise at Guanshanhu Park in Guiyang City, southwest China's Guizhou Province. (Xinhua/Yang Wenbin)

China has made fruitful achievements in promoting extensive fitness-for-all activities in recent years.

By the end of 2023, China had constructed 4,592,700 sports venues covering a total area of 4.071 billion square meters, with their per capita area reaching 2.89 square meters, achieving the target of 2.6 square meters set in the 14th Five-Year (2021-2025) Plan for Sports Development ahead of schedule.

Last year, the General Administration of Sport of China (GASC) implemented a project to address weak links in facilities and equipment for public fitness, providing support for 1,000 towns and subdistricts across the country that lacked public fitness facilities. It also supported the launch of 283 sports parks, public fitness centers and other projects nationwide.

The administration has also worked with the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development to build venues for table tennis, which is considered the country's national sport, in parks and neighborhoods. As of the end of 2023, nearly 75,000 new fitness facilities, including table tennis tables, had been added to nearly 8,500 old residential compounds and 3,800 urban parks across the country.

In addition to being used as venues for major sports events, more and more stadiums now also serve as venues for public fitness. In 2023, the GASC offered subsidies for the opening of 2,491 public sports venues to the public for free or at low prices, covering nearly 1,400 county-level administrative regions nationwide. Statistics showed that the core areas of these venues exceeded 20 million square meters, benefiting over 400 million people.

Photo shows the aerial view of the final match between Team Qiandongnan and Team Zunyi at "Village BA" basketball tournament in Taipan Village, Taijiang County, southwest China's Guizhou Province, March 27, 2023. (Xinhua/Ou Dongqu)

Recently, "Village Basketball Association" or "Village BA," a grassroots basketball tournament, kicked off in Taipan village, Qiandongnan Miao and Dong Autonomous Prefecture, southwest China's Guizhou Province. The event drew a large crowd of spectators and participants.

Likewise, rural sports events have gained popularity in other provincial-level regions in China, including Anhui, Guangxi, and Ningxia.

The GASC has recommended the first batch of outstanding cases for grassroots football, basketball and volleyball tournaments nationwide, and actively organized winter sports activities, including the National Public Ice and Snow Season, to further drive public participation in winter sports.

The administration has also held fitness-for-all activities themed on festivals and special days, including New Year's Day.

Additionally, online public fitness activities have provided people with more fitness options. Last year, over 190 online sports events were held, attracting more than 21.98 million direct participants.

China has implemented a multi-tiered and diverse system for public fitness events. According to statistics, there were 246,000 public sports events organized at various levels in 2023, drawing around 71.83 million participants.

In recent years, China has increased the number of social sports instructors, who play an active role in helping the public engage in sports in a science-based manner.

The country had set up nearly 65,900 social sports organizations and trained 3.2 million social sports instructors dedicated to public welfare by the end of 2023, with the number of social sports instructors for every 1,000 people reaching 2.28, achieving the target of 2.16 set in the 14th Five-Year Plan for Sports Development ahead of schedule. Of particular note, the country newly trained over 50,000 female social sports instructors in rural areas last year.

Gao Zhidan, head of the GASC, said China will further promote extensive fitness-for-all activities to see that the gains brought about by sports development benefit all people in a fair way.

(Web editor: Xian Jiangnan, Liang Jun)


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