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Manawatu Shows Sporting Spirit in Challenge

Media Release

Monday October 16, 2006

Manawatu Shows Off its Sporting Spirit in Nationwide Activity Challenge

Manawatu is leading the country with the highest number of registrations per capita in the race to be New Zealand's most active region.

At the end of the second week of SPARC's (Sport & Recreation New Zealand) Push Play Nation – a month dedicated to getting Kiwis up and active – Manawatu is showing off its competitive spirit, followed closely by Waikato, Gisborne, Whakatane, Opotiki, Stratford, Southland and Wellington.

A month ago SPARC issued a challenge to mayors to get their regions moving in a bid to find New Zealand's most active region. Kiwis can register on-line at or call 0800 ACTIVE (228 483).

Over the month of October, SPARC is closely monitoring which regions have the highest numbers of residents signing up to Push Play Nation – and where the couch potatoes are hiding.

And after two weeks of the race, Manawatu's number of registrations per capita is highest – with 1.60% of the population joined up and on track.

Waikato is next with 1.30%, Gisborne is hot on the leaders' heels with 1.20%, and Whakatane is competitive with 1.10%.

There are 20,321 nationwide registrations to date.

SPARC's Manager, Push Play, Deb Hurdle says the race is getting exciting, especially with the smaller regions leading the larger metropolitans.

"Pushing Play is heaps of fun and we want everyone who is part of Push Play Nation to remember that. Congratulations to the leaders – and keep it up, there's still two weeks to go."

SPARC will be providing a weekly update on how each region is taking up the challenge to be active – up until SPARC's sixth annual Push Play Day on November 3rd.

Push Play Nation is part of SPARC's long-term Push Play campaign to get New Zealanders up and active. Last year, SPARC launched the successful Activator wheel – an activity tool designed for people who wanted to get active, but didn't know where to start.

SPARC's last national survey (2001-2002) showed 32% (or 233,000) young people and 32% (or 878,000) adults were insufficiently active to gain health benefits at that time, completing either no physical activity at all a week or less than 2.5 hours.


Please note: Push Play Nation data is compiled from registration figures received on-line and through the 0800 number. The regions are based on local Council divisions.

© Scoop Media

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