News / Europe

London Olympics Legacy Difficult to Quantify

Al Pessin
LONDON — London Olympics organizers say along with a short-term economic boost and new sports facilities, the Games will leave a legacy in Britain of increased participation in sports and an improvement in public health.  

It's hard to tell if sports centers will be more crowded after the Olympics, with Britons determined to be more fit.  Opinions vary among Londoners near Olympic Park.

"People need to get that encouragement because it tends to be going the other way at the moment, with people sitting in front of [video] games all day," said one bystander.

The recent finals of the annual British university games at the new Olympic Stadium attracted a record number of participants.  

"I think the Olympics being here is truly inspiring people to actually do something that they haven't done for a long time," said University sports official Karen Rothery.

That is in keeping with the kind of post-Games benefits the London Organizing Committee wants.  It formed a separate company to plan for the legacy, and company official Peter Tudor says one goal is to get as many people as possible to use the new sports facilities.

"'Inspire A Generation' is the new motto of the Games, and we're very excited about that," Tudor said.  "We are committed with the venues to programming them absolutely to the brim with sporting activities that people want to do.  But also to encouraging people who have never tried sport before."

But there is no scientific evidence that the Olympics will make any long-term difference in sports participation says Professor Adam Blake at Bournemouth University School of Tourism.

"In terms of academic research on sports participation, it's really not as cut and dried and black and white as we would hope it would be.  In previous events, there really wasn't much evidence either way," noted Blake.

Blake is planning more research after the Games. 

In the meantime, people in Britain have been coming out in unexpectedly high numbers to catch a glimpse of the Olympic torch as it is carried around the country. Their enthusiasm indicates at least the potential to promote sports participation after the Games.

You May Like

Video Video Claims to Show Shi'ite Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boy

While not yet independently confirmed, brutal killing already has gotten attention of Islamic State followers on social media More

After Six Years, Little Change for Niger Delta's Former Militants

Nigerians who laid down arms in exchange for government amnesty subsidies fear program may end with upcoming presidential elections More

Vietnam Pushes for More Educated Drivers to Curb Road Deaths

Transportation officials hope that making a greater effort to get drivers to learn the rules of the road will reduce fatal crashes More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Ed from: California
July 04, 2012 3:42 AM
Just FYI, I'm from California and on July 3 at 11:25PM (Pacific Time) 7:25AM (UK time) I happened to come across the live coverage of the torch relay online. I was quite mesmerized and continued to watch the exchange in the lighting of each torch whle admiring the streets and noticing the weather condition. At approximately 7:30AM (UK time), I was completely shocked after witnessing the torch completely extinguished during the exchange! It was then lit by a lighter from one of the jogging escorts. I heard loud gasps from the crowd! It's late and it's way past my bedtime. My jaw is still on the floor and I just thought I'd share it with y'all before I hit the hay..so much for for the Olympic tradition <sigh>

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Video Claims to Show Shia Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boyi
X
Jeff Seldin
March 05, 2015 2:36 AM
A graphic mobile phone video is spreading on the Internet, claiming to show Iraqi forces or Shia militia executing a handcuffed Sunni boy. Experts have yet to verify the video, but already Islamic State followers are publicizing it across social media, playing on deep-rooted sectarian fears. VOA’s Jeff Seldin reports.
Video

Video Video Claims to Show Shia Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boy

A graphic mobile phone video is spreading on the Internet, claiming to show Iraqi forces or Shia militia executing a handcuffed Sunni boy. Experts have yet to verify the video, but already Islamic State followers are publicizing it across social media, playing on deep-rooted sectarian fears. VOA’s Jeff Seldin reports.
Video

Video Ukrainian Authorities Struggle to Secure a Divided Mariupol

Since last month's cease-fire went into effect, shelling around the port city of Mariupol has decreased, but it is thought pro-Russian separatists remain poised to attack. For the city’s authorities, a major challenge is gaining the trust of residents, while at the same time rooting out informants who are passing sensitive information to the rebels. Patrick Wells reports for VOA.
Video

Video Volunteer Gauge-Watchers Help Fine-Tune Weather Science

An observation system called CoCoRaHS is working to improve weather science, thanks to thousands of volunteers across the country who measure precipitation in their own backyards, then share their data through the Internet. VOA's Shelley Schlender reports.
Video

Video NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planet

NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Muslims Radicalized Online

Young Muslims are being radicalized ‘in their bedrooms’ through direct contact with Islamic State or ISIL fighters via the Internet, according to terror experts. There are growing concerns that authorities and Internet providers are not doing enough to counter online extremism - which analysts say is spread by a prolific network of online supporters around the world. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video African Americans Recall 1960's Fight For Voting Rights

U.S. President Barack Obama and thousands of people will gather in the small southern U.S. city of Selma, Alabama, Saturday, March 7th to commemorate the 50th anniversary of a historic voting rights march that became known as “Bloody Sunday." VOA’s Chris Simkins traveled to Alabama and introduces us to some of the foot soldiers of the voting rights struggles of the 1960’s.
Video

Video Positive Messaging Transforms Ethiopia's Image

Ethiopia was once known for famine and droughts. Now, headlines more often point to its fast-growing economy and its emergence as a regional peacemaker. How has Addis Ababa changed the narrative? VOA's Marthe van der Wolf reports.
Video

Video Cyber War Rages Between Iran, US

A newly published report indicates Iran and the United States have increased their cyber attacks on each other, even as their top diplomats are working toward an agreement to guarantee Iran does not develop a nuclear weapon and to free Iran from international sanctions. The development is part of a growing global trend. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Answers Elude Families of MH370 Passengers

For the families on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, an airline official’s statement nearly one year ago that the plane had lost contact with air traffic control at 2:40 AM is the only thing that remains confirmed. William Ide reports.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More