The Outdoor Foundation Releases Participation Report


Published annually by The Outdoor Foundation, the 2011 Outdoor Recreation Participation Top-line Report 2011 is derived from 40,000 online interviews conducted in January 2011/early February 2011. Respondents came from a nationwide sample of individuals and households from the U.S. Online Panel operated by Synovate. A total of 15,086 individual and 23,656 household surveys were completed. The total panel has over 1 million members and is maintained to be representative of the U.S. population. Over-sampling of ethnic groups took place to boost response from typically under-responding groups.

Here are some notable points:

  • BMX was the second fastest growing sport in youth participation, increasing 48.8 percent
  • Growth of participation in more expensive outdoor activities, such as Skiing (Freestyle), up 23.6 percent and Skiing (Telemark), up 22.9 percent
  • Bicycling (Road, Mountain and BMX) was the 4th most popular adult outdoor activity for adults over the age of 25 by participation rate with a reported 24.6 million participants
  • Bicycling (Road, Mountain and BMX), Skateboarding and Surfing were the 2nd, 3rd, and 5th respective favorites for youth (ages 6- 24) outdoor activities
  • African-Americans, Asian/Pacific Islanders and Hispanics  now make up 30 percent of outdoor participants, up five percentage points since 2007
  • Nearly half of Americans ages 6 and older, or 137.9 million individuals, participated in at least one outdoor activity in 2010, making 10.1 billion outdoor outings

You can check out the 10-page Top-line report for free at The Outdoor Foundation will publish the full version of the report with far greater detail this summer.

About The Outdoor Foundation
The Outdoor Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to inspiring and growing future generations of outdoor enthusiasts. Through ground-breaking research, action-oriented convening and outreach and education programs, The Foundation is working with partners to mobilize a major cultural shift that leads all Americans to the great outdoors. Learn more about The Foundation at, email at or call 202.271.3252.