The government has announced a new benchmark for sports engagement in schools, following the release of a new survey.
Commissioned by the Department for Children, Schools and Families, the research revealed 51 per cent of young people take part in at least three hours of sport every week.
More than two-thirds (69 per cent) of respondents said they compete in school events every year, with 44 per cent playing against other schools.
Commenting on the results, children's minister Iain Wright said school and youth sport had "never been so well funded or enjoyed".
He announced new plans to raise targets for participation in physical activity to five hours a week.
Nick Gibb, the Conservative party schools spokesperson, said the figures were "disappointingly low".
"Competitive sport is crucial not just for exercise but also for developing team spirit and co-ordination skills," he noted
Written by Charlotte Michaels