David Lloyd Clubs reveals how the sports played as children affects the career paths we choose

From pitch to boardroom

New research from David Lloyd Clubs reveals that the average British parent starts to think about the sports they could enroll their children into before they even turn five years of age. And, what’s more surprising, 5% of parents confessed that they started making sporting plans for their little ones as soon as they hit six months. 

This keenness to push children into sport isn’t just for fun - 43% of parents believe that partaking in sports at a young age could impact on how successful their children are in the future.

Parents also believe that sport has a positive impact on their confidence (62%), makes for more outgoing and sociable children (58%), enables children to feel determined and fuels healthy competitiveness (50%).

The research highlight that almost half (46%) of children play football, followed by swimming (41%) and tennis (30%). The million-dollar question however, is there a correlation between the sports our kids do as children and the career path they end up choosing?

The research affirms that sport gives kid’s motivation and a drive to find a career with the typical career choices of sporty children being:
  1. Football - Accountancy, Banking and Finance
  2. Swimming -  Retail 
  3. Tennis – Healthcare 
  4. Athletics – Technology & IT
  5. Netball – Teaching 
  6. Hockey – Creative Arts and Design 
  7. Dance – Public Services
  8. Gymnastics - Engineering and Manufacturing
  9. Rugby – Business, Consulting and Management 
  10. Judo / Karate – Media and Journalism 


Sinead Johnson, Group Family Manager at David Lloyd Clubs said: “Playing sport as a child is the first time you learn some really important life skills such as team work, determination and communication skills which goes a long way to help you in your future career. This research highlights that exercise can really impact the career paths the younger generations choose - therefore it’s important to encourage children to take up a sport as a child no matter what that may be – anything from football to swimming and tennis can have a positive impact on their future. 
“At David Lloyd Clubs we have a wide variety of sports for children to get involved in after school and during the summer holidays, making David Lloyd Club the perfect playground to explore, learn and hopefully carve a career path.”


- ENDS -
For more information please contact 0207 234 9150 / [email protected]

Notes to Editors

The survey was taken by One Poll and surveyed 2,000 respondents
About David Lloyd Leisure Group
The David Lloyd Leisure Group operates 83 clubs in the UK and a further 10 clubs across Europe, comprising David Lloyd Clubs , Harbour Clubs and Next Generation, plus the new high street concept, David Lloyd Studio. It has approximately 450,000 members and employs 6,000 people. This includes an expert health and fitness team of over 1,800, while it contracts the services of more than 400 tennis professionals. Across all clubs, David Lloyd Leisure has over 150 swimming pools (of which half are indoor) and offers over 10,000 exercise classes per week. Every week 20,000 children learn to swim at David Lloyd Leisure and 12,500 learn to play tennis. Its racquets facilities are unparalleled with 800 tennis courts as well as 180 badminton courts and 140 squash courts. Additional facilities include health and beauty spas, club lounges with free internet access, crèches, nurseries and specialist sports shops.

Press enquiries

For press and PR enquiries only, email the press office.

For all other enquiries please contact your local club via the email addresses above.


Interested in joining?