Nearly half of South Coast families find sporting costs a financial burden according to a new report from St. George Bank.
The research revealed that aside from fees, travel costs and uniforms are the top two additional financial burdens for families, and one in six had even upgraded their car to assist with their sporting needs.
Three in 10 families avoid sport due to cost, and one in 10 said they don’t participate at all due to health or safety concerns.
General Manager for St.George Bank, Ross Miller, said parents were having more of an influence over not only whether children play sport at all, but also the type of sport their children choose.
“More than a third of families told us the cost of the sport impacts what type of activity they choose for their child,” he said.
“Parents admit they look closely at travel, uniform costs as well as additional competition fees before deciding on the best sport for their child.”
Mr Miller added the research showed families were still prioritising sport because of health benefits, confidence, and the social skills it provided to their children..
“70 per cent of parents agree the benefits far outweigh the costs – which as a parent myself is a real insight – it shows parents are trying to go above and beyond and do the best for their families,” he said.
The research revealed families are emotionally invested when it comes to sport. A third of parents give up their own time to car pool, fundraise, wash uniforms, and cater for their children’s teams.
Finances aside, safety also plays a big part in decision making with more than a third of parents saying they avoid sports that are high contact or could risk their children’s safety.
- 30 per cent of families spend $2000 or more every year.
- Five per cent of families spend more than $5000 every year.
- The top three reasons for not participating in sport are cost, children choosing not to, and transport issues.
- The top team sports for boys were (in order) soccer, basketball, rugby league, netball, and Aussie rules.
- The top team sports for girls were (in order) netball, soccer, basketball, and Aussie rules.
- 90 per cent of families participate in swimming.