With less than one week to go until sporting fever takes over the country, new survey results reveal women in Scotland dream of going for gold in the pool in this year’s Commonwealth Games.

Thursday 17 July 2014      Scotland
Survey reveals swimming as top choice for Scottish women ahead of Commonwealth Games

Breakthrough Breast Cancer asked women in Scotland what sport they would most like to participate in if they were representing their country in this year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Swimming came out on top with athletics, badminton and gymnastics as other popular choices.

The survey also reveals that as many as one in five women do not do any physical activity during an average week. Encouragingly, though, three in five women would be likely to do more physical activity in the knowledge that professionals agree it could help to reduce their risk of breast cancer.

Working with experts across the world, Breakthrough has found that women can reduce their risk of developing breast cancer by at least 20 per cent by being regularly physically active.

James Jopling, Director for Scotland at Breakthrough Breast Cancer says:

The Commonwealth Games are providing Scotland with a fantastic opportunity to take an interest in sport and get active this summer. We know that by being physically active women can reduce their risk of breast cancer. People mistakenly think you have to go to a gym or play team sports. You don’t. Just do anything that makes you feel warmer, breathe harder and gets your heart beating faster. It is interesting that swimming has come out on top - it is a great example of a fun activity that is accessible to all ages and to individuals and communities across Scotland.

“There are many different causes of breast cancer, and based on past research we know that maintaining a healthy weight, limiting the amount of alcohol you drink and being regularly physically active can all help to reduce a woman’s risk of developing the disease.”

Raise your pulse, reduce your risk

Women across Scotland and the UK can now use the Breakthrough physical activity tracker, BRISK. The online, interactive tool is there to help women plan their physical activity, share ideas and find out more about the facts and figures behind the evidence.

James continues:

“It is extremely encouraging to see that women would make changes to reduce their breast cancer risk, and our new online tool, BRISK, is there to help them make those changes. We believe physical activity is one of the things women can do to stack the odds against breast cancer, and we hope one of the legacies of the Commonwealth Games is to inspire women to raise their pulse and reduce their risk.”

Louise Martin CBE, Chair, sportscotland said:

“Having competed at a Commonwealth Games as a swimmer I can safely say that representing your country really is a life-changing experience.

“At sportscotland we know that sport has the power to change lives and this survey certainly supports that view. That’s why our focus is on providing more and better opportunities for people to make sport and physical activity a part of their daily lives in Scotland. We know not everyone will represent their country on the world stage, but we firmly believe that everyone has a sporty side and would encourage more people to unleash it.  

“Breakthrough Breast Cancer has highlighted the fact that even small increases in physical activity levels can have a huge impact on the health of the nation and that’s worth its weight in gold.”