Wyndham council is backing a plan to encourage more diversity in sports over the next 30 years.
Wyndham’s Hard to Locate Sports strategy maps the infrastructure needed to encourage recreational options including archery, motocross, horse riding and shooting.
The council is also planning 34 new sports reserves to add to the 32 already in place.
Cr Mia Shaw acknowledged at last week’s council meeting that land availability, zoning and infrastructure restrictions meant the new strategy was not going to be easy to pull off.
“These factors make it hard for needs to be addressed in a thorough way,” she said.
“We don’t have access to land in the right places to address all the emerging needs.”
But, she said, the new strategy provides a chance to explore the broad range of sports available for communities, especially for people not already engaged in mainstream sports.
Cr Shaw highlighted the need to explore alternatives for older men and women to stay physically and mentally active, citing the strategy’s suggestion of greyhound coursing.
While the new strategy focuses on lower profile sports and activities, a study released last year identified Wyndham as having one of the lowest sports participation rates among Victorian children.
Only 11 per cent of Wyndham children aged under 14 were enrolled in a sports club last year.
This does not compare well with sports-mad regional and rural areas where as many as 45 per cent of children are involved in football, basketball, bowls, cricket, golf, gymnastics, hockey, netball, soccer, sailing and tennis.