Introduction: Organised sports participation brings health benefits to children and adolescents, including physical, psychological, and social health. However, there is a scarcity of research on specific population groups such as immigrant children. This study aimed to examine trends and determinants of organised sports participation among children of immigrant parents from low-and-middle-income countries (LMIC), high-income countries (HIC), and Australian children.
Methods: Data were from the birth-cohort the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children aged 6-15 years with follow-up between 2010 and 2018. Organised sports participation was measured using two items about regular participation in team and individual sports. Multilevel binominal logit modelling was used to assess the determinants of organised sports participation across groups.
Results: Both team and individual sports participation increased between 6 and 11 years and declined between 11 and 15 years across all groups. Children of immigrant parents from LMIC (OR 0.65; 95% CI 0.57-0.74) and HIC (OR 0.82; 95% CI 0.76-0.89) had lower odds of team sports participation than Australian children. Children of immigrant parents from LMIC had lower odds of team sports participation (OR 0.79; 95% CI 0.69-0.90) than children of immigrant parents from HIC. Female children, high screen time, high psychological difficulties, increased number of siblings and low socio-economic position were identified as determinants of a lower team and individual sports participation.
Conclusion: The present study identified disparities in organised sports participation among children of immigrant parents and Australian children. Our findings can potentially inform strategies to promote equity in organised sports participation of children of immigrant parents from LMIC. Special considerations such as government support (e.g., grants), language support for immigrants with limited English language proficiency and community awareness programs may benefit.
- •Strategies such as community grant assistance for immigrant families may be of benefit, focusing on children of immigrant parents from LMIC
- •Special considerations such as gender-specific strategies to target female children and cultural differences should also be considered in sports participation
Keywords: Team sports, Individual sports, Immigrant, Children, LMIC, HIC
Declaration of interest statement
No conflict of interest.