Policy and research

Current status of SCforH

The current status report will be added here when it has been published by scientific protocol.

Since 2008, two EU-funded SCforH projects were focused on supporting sports clubs to recognize health potential of their sports and include health-oriented sports activities in addition to their standard programmes and initiatives. The projects included more than 30 partner, associate and supporting institutions from 12 European countries. The SCforH movement has been strongly supported by the European Commission, European network for the promotion of health-enhancing physical activity – HEPA Europe, European Non-Governmental Sports Organisation (ENGSO), European Federation for Company Sports (EFCS), International Sport and Culture Association (ISCA), International Trim and Fitness International Sport for All Association (TAFISA) and other large international organizations.

A number of meetings, workshops, symposiums, seminars, and presentations were organized around Europe to dis-seminate the SCforH concepts and ideas. The dissemination also took place through published media.

Our recent literature review found more than 30 mentions of SCforH in academic publications (e.g. research articles, conference proceedings, doctoral theses) and more than 140 mentions in other published media (e.g. news articles, reports, policy documents). The number of publications mentioning SCforH increased over time, reaching 10 aca-demic documents in 2014 and 66 other publications in 2015.

By conducting a range of online surveys in 36 European countries (including all 28 EU member states, 5 EU candidate countries, Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland), we evaluated the outcomes of SCforH dissemination activities among international and national sport associations, among HEPA promotion stakeholders, and at the grass-root sports club level. The survey was completed by 22 previous and current Sports Club for Health project partner institutions, 42 representatives of HEPA Europe member organizations, and nearly 550 sports associations.

The survey data show that between 8 and 50 percent of sports associations in Europe were aware of the SCforH guidelines. Awareness was highest among national sport-for-all organizations (54%) followed by national umbrella sport organizations (50%), national Olympic committees (25%), national sport associations (20%), and European-level sports federations (8%). We also found that more than 40% of HEPA Europe member organizations were aware of the SCforH guidelines.

The representatives of sports associations involved in the survey were also asked to estimate how many sports clubs in their country have started SCforH initiatives. The estimates indicate that in most European countries SCforH initia-tives were implemented in less than 10% of sports clubs. Given there are more than 2.5 thousand sport associations, almost a million sports clubs, and more than 60 million individual sport club members in Europe, these survey data show a great potential reach of SCforH initiatives.

Encouraging results come from a survey conducted within the Social Inclusion and Volunteering in Sports Clubs in Europe (SIVSCE) project. Out of more than 30 thousand participating sports clubs from 9 countries, 37% reported they were committed to offering health-enhancing physical activity programmes, whilst 75% reported they feel that their sport discipline is suitable as health-enhancing physical activity. This shows a great potential for the future dis-semination of SCforH guidelines among European sports clubs.


SCforH project is very grateful to all participants in our survey for their great contribution to the project. We are also very grateful to Sonja Kahlmeier and Marina Hansen for helping us conduct survey among WHO/HEPA Europe mem-bers, and the Social Inclusion and Volunteering in Sports Clubs in Europe (SIVSCE) project (Erasmus+ Collaborative Partnerships grant, reference number 556994-EPP-1-2014-1-DK-SPO-SCP) and particularly its members Christoph Breuer, German Sport University Cologne, Germany; Svenja Feiler, German Sport University Cologne, Germany; Ra-mon Llopis-Goig, University of Valencia, Spain; Karsten Elmose-Østerlund, University of Southern Denmark, Den-mark; Rahel Bürgi, Lamprecht und Stamm Sozialforschung und Beratung AG, Switzerland; Elien Claes, KU Leuven, Belgium; Angela Gebert, Lamprecht und Stamm Sozialforschung und Beratung AG, Switzerland; Bjarne Ibsen, Univer-sity of Southern Denmark, Denmark; Markus Lamprecht, Lamprecht und Stamm Sozialforschung und Beratung AG, Switzerland; Siegfried Nagel, University of Bern, Switzerland; Geoff Nichols, University of Sheffield, England; Szilvia Perényi, University of Debrecen, Hungary; Monika Piatkowska, Josef Pilsudski University of Physical Education in Warsaw, Poland; Jeroen Scheerder, KU Leuven, Belgium; Ørnulf

Seippel, Norwegian School of Sports Sciences, Norway; Hanspeter Stamm, Lamprecht und Stamm Sozialforschung und Beratung AG, Switzerland; Dirk Steinbach, Führungsakademie des DOSB, Germany; Jan Willem van der Roest, Mulier Institute, the Netherlands; Harold van der Werff, Mulier Institute, the Netherlands for kindly helping us to collect data among sports clubs as part of their survey.