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London 2012: Did hosting the Games change sport in the capital?

London 2012: Did hosting the Games change sport in the capital?

Did hosting the Games change sport in the capital? When hosting the London Olympics in 2012, it was difficult to imagine all the economic and social benefits of hosting, both during the Olympics and beyond. The ability to host these Games was a key reason why we won the right to host them because they had such an extensive impact on all levels of British society.

London 2012: Did hosting the Games change sport in the capital? When hosting the London Olympics in 2012
credit: bbc.com

Numerous promises were made, including those that got highlighted like the “Inspire a Generation” motto in 2012, which most people interpreted as soon as they heard it.

In the week leading up to the Olympics, the British government is hoping that more people being physically active will encourage people to be involved in sports. In 2008 the UK set a target of having two million extra people becoming more active by 2012.

Because of this, the target to increase participation in physical activity across the country was no longer included as a goal for future documents but the aspiration remained. Despite this, England saw an almost non-existent increase in participation in physical activity following 2012’s London Olympics costing 1 billion pounds overall.

Numerous studies have questioned the idea that hosting major sporting events like the Olympics would lead to more people being active in their day-to-day lives. More people are even declining in recent times, despite the hopes of organizers for 2012.

Statistics from sports group Sports England show that over the past five years, the percentage of people classed as active (with activity levels of at least 150 minutes a week) has fallen, while the number classed as inactive has increased.

Surveys have shown the rate of people participating in sports has begun to inch upward but is still lower than pre-pandemic levels even after previous restrictions have been removed.

With the rise of automated content across the country, this phenomenon is “concerning.” A better way to understand the rise in automation is to see how many people with disabilities are participating in sports.

More disabled people played sports in 2016 than when London won the bid 11 years earlier. 

However, data has shown that 77% of people with disabilities want to be more physically active. There are fewer people taking part in activities than there are without disabilities, and adults with a disability were found to be over twice as likely to not be physically active than those without.

Elite athletes took advantage of investment because countries like the UK improved their gold medal total at the 2016 Olympics, making them the first country in history to increase their medal count after a home game.

The Paralympics has been successful for Britain, but not without controversy. They were able to reach the podium in more sports than any other nation at Tokyo 2020.

There has been some controversy over the UK Sport’s funding policy, which has led to allegations of bullying and abuse. Some have suggested that the decision not to provide funding to sports that are deemed unlikely to win medals could be partially responsible.

Regardless of the success achieved, those involved argue that these methods meant they lost access to funding or never had the chance to grow. These ideas were first brought up during sports with a low likelihood of achieving medals and participation recently came as a concern.

This tournament highlighted the lack of support for women’s sports compared to men’s. Peggy Etiebet, assistant coach for Britain’s women’s water polo team, believes some funding remained.

One way to spread female representation across sports is to get girls into water sports and get them exercising, which is great for many different things going on in the world. UK Sport announced in 2020 that it would adopt a new approach to funding, including not just medal potential but the success that includes more sports.

Water polo has been one of the few sports to benefit from 2018 squad changes, which have awarded £375,000 over the next four years as part of the National Squads Support Fund. The money is still a privilege in which players must raise their own funds to practice and compete.

The legacy of the Olympics and Paralympics includes facilities for brand new sports, like Lee Valley Velopark and the London Aquatics Centre.

These are for the stars to perform at their best but are subsidised so they’re affordable for the community, as was promised.

Built within the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, the London Stadium is now the home of London’s athletics. The ceremony marking its official opening was just as joyous and energetic as Danny Boyle’s unforgettable opening ceremony. Super Saturday saw an unprecedented amount of gold medals for Great Britain across many disciplines.

The original plans promised that the London Stadium would be made into a 25,000-seat multi-purpose venue that would consist of athletics as its “core” after the event.

However, later on, it was reconfigured in tune with a budget-breaking multi-use football stadium. In some of the other Olympic and Paralympic places such as Pyeongchang, upgrades were made to their venues that helped keep the costs manageable.

West Ham United moved into the arena in 2016, making an investment in a square measure on both sides of the stadium. Polls have shown it feels like an expensive place to take in events and concerts hasn’t been a common sight in recent years.

According to The Anniversary Games, the 2020 edition was cancelled due to the pandemic in 2021, and Gateshead was chosen as the new location for 2021 in part because of expensive reconfiguration costs needed to turn a stadium into a venue for athletics.

In the near future, UK Athletics may be forced to leave London and relocate to Birmingham to operate, leaving London unable to host track and field events at all.

Despite all the hopeful talk around Crystal Palace stadium before the Olympics, the building has continued to remain abandoned. With the athletes’ home of athletics moving north to London for the Games underway, much was made about if the stadium would be impacted during its usage.

But the National Sports Centre of Crystal Palace has been closed since March 2020, while the decaying stands that once hosted Usain Bolt remain in need of repair.

Earlier this year, chair of the Crystal Palace Sports Partnership, John Powell said there was a “significant embarrassment” if London didn’t get a stadium. T

You have the foundations set up, now it’s just a matter of investment and willpower to keep them in shape. The NSC is one of the most iconic sports venues in Europe, but this is a risky proposition due to its current status as an ownerless venue; which was announced by Sadiq Khan’s office last year.

However, Mr Khan is not that concerned about the questions swirling around the future of an athletics stadium due to his recent revelation of a plan to bring the Olympics and Paralympics back to London by 2036.

The number one focus for Locog’s bid will be sporting facilities. London has a lot of cycling and swimming facilities already, so they don’t need to use expensive carbon emissions to build new ones. If the games are given the go-ahead, Locog suggests that it’s possible that there could be a future flame on its track again.

Read More: TCS London Marathon: defending champion Sisay lemma leads 

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