Policy of mass physical fitness

Updated: 2014-12-17 08:02

(China Daily)

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The government has made the promotion of the sports industry a national strategy. This innovative policy will, indirectly and directly, help people maintain physical fitness and increase their (especially youth's) participation in different types of sports.

Even though the government had been urging people for a long time to exercise or play sports regularly to keep physically fit, it was difficult to make it work. But the innovative policy, apart from boosting the sports industry, will also spread health awareness among the people. In this sense, it is a significant reform - from the narrow focus on performances on the sports fields to overall promotion of physical fitness and sports.

Most people watching games, including the Olympic Games and the World Cup, on television are unaware of how important sports are, despite their love for sports. In general, people see gold medallists as jewels, discounting or discarding the other athletes. This attitude is an insult to athletes and exposes people's ignorance about competitive sports. Performance is not the be-all and end-all of sports.

The issuance of the policy of "promoting consumption of sports goods and services along with the development of the sports industry" is an example of China's governance principle, which is aimed at activating not only governments at all levels, but also people at the individual level.

The policy says the per capita playing enclosure in the country should reach 2 square meters by 2025. The significant increase in people's awareness about sports and physical fitness is a shot in the arm for the sports industry and will help expand its consumer base to an estimated 500 million people over the next decade.

That the policy recommends students participate in sports for more than one hour a day shows the government's intention to build a sports culture with children. That doesn't mean the policy has ignored the older groups; it recommends the participation of middle-age people and senior citizens too in sports.

Whichever we look at it, the policy is inspiring. It will promote sustainable social-economic development apart from boosting the sports industry.

ZHANG XIAOXUAN, via e-mail