Canadian Municipal Recreation and Physical Fitness

Providing a closer look at your community's recreation behaviour and needs

Regular physical activity is important for citizens of all ages. Beyond the well-known physical health benefits, regular participation in physical activity also provides many mental, social, environmental, and economic benefits for both the individual and society as a whole. Local municipalities can help support physical activity and active living in their community by ensuring that citizens have access to a wide range of high-quality and affordable recreation services, programs, and facilities. To better understand how well local recreation offerings align with citizens' recreation behaviours and needs, Ipsos Reid is pleased to offer your municipality the opportunity to participate in our annual Municipal Recreation and Physical Fitness syndicated research study.

This shared-cost vehicle is designed to explore key issues related to recreation and active living in your community, including:

  • How often citizens participate in physical activity;
  • Types of physical activities participated in;
  • Reasons for participating/not participating in physical activity;
  • Ways to encourage physical activity;
  • Satisfaction with local recreation facilities and services; and
  • Support for user fees.

In addition to these core topics, Ipsos Reid is also pleased to offer two optional modules exploring physical activity among children and overall participation in arts and cultural activities.

The Children's Physical Activity module includes questions around children's participation in physical activity and satisfaction with local recreation services and programs. It also captures suggestions for new recreation services and programs geared towards children that citizens would like to see offered in their community.

The Arts and Culture module examines citizens' participation in cultural or creative activities, including the barriers to participation. Satisfaction with local cultural and creative opportunities is also assessed.

Ultimately, the results of the research will provide your municipality with valuable insight into your citizens' recreation behaviours and needs. This information can be used to help guide future planning processes and serve as a benchmark against which to evaluate the effectiveness of efforts aimed at supporting physical activity and active living in your community.

Normative Comparisons

In addition to looking at your overall results, Ipsos Reid will also compare your results to those of other Canadian municipalities using our database of municipal norms (where applicable). This will provide valuable context, added insight, greater depth of analysis, and benchmarks against which to evaluate your performance.

Research Methodology

A syndicated study is to research what a car pool is to commuters – it's a shared vehicle with shared costs. In a syndicated study, subscribers share the cost of data collection for the set of core questions. Thus, the report cost is only a fraction of what it would have been if a custom study had been done just for you.

For Ipsos Reid's Municipal Recreation and Physical Fitness syndicated research study, we will conduct a telephone survey of 300 citizens aged 18 years or older in each participating municipality. Overall results based on a sample size of 300 will be accurate to within ±5.7%, 19 times out of 20.

To keep costs low, the same core questions (topics outlined above) will be asked in all municipalities. However, there is also an opportunity to add custom questions or increase the number of interviews for an additional charge. Your municipality's individual results will not be shared with other municipalities, although the results will be incorporated into the overall normative score for comparative purposes.


All subscribers to the Municipal Recreation and Physical Fitness syndicated research study will receive:

  • Tele-consulting with Ipsos staff on how to customize the study for your municipality (custom questions, booster samples)
  • PowerPoint report of the results
  • Detailed Tables (Excel) with cross-tabulations of the major demographics (age, gender, etc)
  • In-person presentation of findings (travel billed extra)