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Sport Structures were commissioned to provide an insight into the perceptions, motivations, and barriers and needs of current non-participants and in particular individuals from underrepresented groups. The aim being to enable Triathlon England to achieve their aspiration of growing the sport and respond with confidence about their contribution to the Sport England and DCMS priorities.


Our approach to this project has included a close working relationship with Triathlon England to ensure the methodology fulfilled the brief and filled in the gaps in their understanding of consumers.

We used three key methods:

1. Desk Based Research - We conducted desk based research to gain a better understanding of the sport, who is currently not participating, who may be the potential target audiences. This involved reviewing Triathlon England documentation and interpreting external reports, documentation and data.

2. An Online Survey - We created and managed an online survey to discover the awareness, attitudes and perceptions of triathlon amongst new potential consumers to complete.

3. Focus Groups - We conducted six focus groups of non-participants from a variety of demographic and geographic background. The focus groups lasted between 25 and 55 minutes in length and included individual and group discussions/interviews.


1. Outputs –Triathlon England were presented with a report, SWOT analysis, supply and demand analysis, and a summary document that outlined triathlon England key targets groups based on the research.

2. Recommendations –We recommended a focused approach utilising enabling factors to target, reach and engage these new consumers. Once engaged delivery needs to meet consumer expectations and motivations to increase the likelihood of retention. We have established that a selection of enablers should be created and programme design needs to consider the needs of different new audiences. For some individuals it will require a combination of these “enablers” to turn contemplation into action.

3. Future- Triathlon England are currently reviewing the recommendations and using the insight to inform their development going forward in line with the DCMS strategy and Sport England’s NGB funding guidelines.

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