New Insights Released: Income, Ethnicity and Physical Activity

In Hertfordshire, we are far more likely to be inactive if we live on a low or insecure income or have an Asian or Black background. Find out why.

Everyone should feel able to engage in sport and physical activity and be able to experience the benefits it brings to individuals and communities, regardless of age, identity, background or ability. However, if we are living on a low income and/or are from an ethnically diverse background, far fewer of us are experiencing those benefits. We’re not defined solely by our gender, our ethnicity, or our income.  But for too long there have been clear patterns in the characteristics of people who feel less able to get active, and these are present for both adults and children and young people.


Living on a low income

Living on a low or insecure income does not directly cause inactivity, but it does create circumstances and barriers that significantly contribute to a more sedentary lifestyle.

Around 234,000 people are in lower socio-economic groups (NS SEC classes 6-8) in Hertfordshire, that’s almost 1/4 of our working population.

In Hertfordshire, we are nearly twice as likely to be inactive if we live on a low or insecure income, compared to living on a higher income, and this trend has remained stubbornly persistent over the past six years.


Understanding the impact of ethnicity on physical activity behaviour

Hertfordshire's population is becoming more ethnically diverse, with the biggest growth across Hertfordshire seen in people from White Other and Asian backgrounds.

Across Hertfordshire, people from Asian and Black backgrounds are far more likely to be physically inactive than people who are White or from a Mixed Heritage.


Find out more

The insights on income and ethnicity form part of the HSP Physical Activity Story Map, which is an interactive physical activity insight tool for Hertfordshire.


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Get in touch…

If you have a generic question please email the Herts Sport & Physical Activity Partnership team: