Eurobarometer on sport reveals high levels of inactivity in the EU


According to the results of the latest Eurobarometer survey on sport and physical activity, 59% of European Union citizens never or seldom exercise or play sport, while 41% do so at least once a week.

Northern Europe is more physically active than the South and East. 70% of respondents in Sweden said they exercise or play sport at least once a week, just ahead of Denmark (68%) and Finland (66%), followed by the Netherlands (58%) and Luxembourg (54%). At the other end of the scale, 78% never do so in Bulgaria, followed by Malta (75%), Portugal (64%), Romania (60%) and Italy (60%).

Commenting on the findings, Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner responsible for sport, said: “The results of the Eurobarometer confirm the need for measures to encourage more people to make sport and physical activity a part of their daily lives. This is crucial, not only in terms of an individual’s health, wellbeing and integration, but also because of the significant economic costs resulting from physical inactivity. The Commission is committed to supporting Member States in efforts to encourage the public to be more active. We will implement the recently adopted Council Recommendation on health-enhancing physical activity and move ahead with plans for a European Week of Sport. The new Erasmus+ programme will also – for the first time – provide funding for transnational initiatives to promote sport and physical activity.”

The survey shows that local authorities in particular could do more to encourage citizens to be physically active. While 74% of respondents believe that local sport clubs and other providers provide sufficient opportunities for this, 39% think their local authorities are not doing enough.


This Eurobarometer survey was carried out for the European Commission by the TNS Opinion & Social network in the 28 Member States between 23 November and 2 December 2013. Nearly 28 000 respondents from different social and population groups took part in the poll. The survey follows comparable surveys conducted in 2002 and 2009, and will contribute to providing data to support the development of policies to promote sport and physical activity.

No exercise for 59% of Greeks

Research results by Eurobarometer, shows an alarming majority of Greeks doesn’t bother to exercise at all. About 69% of Greek citizens exercise very little or not at all in their daily routine and that’s 10% more than the average European.

It appears as few as 7% of Greeks get a regular exercise five times a week and 24% state they do it 1 to 4 times a week. That’s lower than the European average, which is 8% for regular exercise and 33% for less than 4 times a week. Between 1 to 3 times a week worth of exercise is achieved by 10% of the Greek population (17% of the average Europeans), while 59% get no exercise at all (42% for the average European).

Understandably perhaps, the cold being quite unbearable, northern Europeans exercise more than southerners.

So here goes the general consensus that Americans are more prone to obesity than Europeans because of lack of exercise. The scales are getting even and Europe is on its way to a heart condition crisis equal, if not bigger than the one in the States. As for Greeks, we are on our way to becoming a… heartless people. Literally.

Read all the Key findings from the survey:

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health


2 Responses

  1. I agree with you. But we all must learn not to give up. As ancient Greek used to say: “A Sound Mind Equals a Healthy Body”.

  2. Probably most don’t have the time or desire due to the poor economy in most of the EU. When you are just trying to survive a game of football isn’t a top priority.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: