Sunday, August 1, 2010

London's Olympics A Sporting Catalyst for Couch Potatoes?

London's 2012 Olympics are looked upon as a n opportunity to regenerate part of the city -- and to inspire a new generation of physically active Londoners. Some doubt that sports-centric goal can be met.

Britain's much-trumpeted Olympic legacy following the 2012 Games could amount to little more than the regeneration of a small pocket of east London. With just two years to go before the £9bn Olympic Games become the focus of world attention, questions are being asked about whether they will be able to persuade a nation of couch potatoes to put down the remote and pull on their trainers or trunks.

Despite venue and stadium construction being on budget and ahead of schedule, officials have admitted that there is a "big gap" in plans to increase nationwide participation on the back of the event. Promises of an Olympic legacy were central to London's winning the bid in 2005. The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Jeremy Hunt, said yesterday that there was no specific funding set aside for the Games to be used as a catalyst for a surge in sports participation.

What are we getting out of the Olympic Games?
The Independent
July 25, 2010