Changes in German sport participation

Klostermann, Claudia; Nagel, Siegfried (2014). Changes in German sport participation. In: Weed, Mike (ed.) Sport and Leisure Management (Vol. 3: Sport and leisure consumption). SAGE Library of Tourism, Hospitality & Leisure: Vol. 3 (pp. 3-26). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications

2012_irss_main_document_final version_Changes in German sport participation.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Publisher holds Copyright.

Download (194kB) | Preview

Sport has become a highly differentiated social phenomenon in recent years. Changes in society, such as individualization, the growing significance of the health and body culture, and changing values, are considered to be generative mechanisms for increasing social importance and the differentiation of modern sport. Although discussions in sport sociology attribute the changes observed in recent decades of sport participation to a socially determined differentiation of sport, this premise has hardly ever been empirically tested. The present study examines to what extent the postulated developments in sport can be observed on the micro level of those engaging in sport, by examining sport behaviour from a contemporary historical perspective. Based on a life-course approach to research, a total of 1739 over 50-year-olds in Germany were asked about their sport participation as part of a retrospective longitudinal study. Results show that the increasing differentiation of sport can be documented by more diversified forms of individual sport careers. During a 30-year observation period the popularity of competitive sport decreased and the variety of ways in which sport was organized increased. A differentiated analysis based on examining three birth cohorts showed that the reported change in sport participation can be attributed to age, cohort and period effects. In addition, the present study examines how specific events in contemporary history are reflected in individual sporting careers. Sport careers in Chemnitz (Eastern Germany) and Braunschweig (Western Germany) differed before German reunification, but these differences have evened out after the political changes and the process of transformation.

Item Type:

Book Section (Book Chapter)


07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Sport Science (ISPW)
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Sport Science (ISPW) > Sport Science III

UniBE Contributor:

Klostermann, Claudia and Nagel, Siegfried


700 Arts > 790 Sports, games & entertainment
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




SAGE Library of Tourism, Hospitality & Leisure


Sage Publications




Claudia Klostermann

Date Deposited:

12 Mar 2014 14:33

Last Modified:

08 Sep 2017 13:16




Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback