The use of sport to promote employment, education and desistance from crime: lessons from a review of English and Welsh prisons

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Well established as a core element of most prison regimes, sport (as well as physical activity and play) is widely recognised as a valuable way in which to engage with incarcerated populations in promoting health, education, pro-social behaviour and ultimately desistance from crime. However, the rehabilitative potential of different types of sport, and the specific prison populations for whom sport can be most impactful, remains unclear. Drawing on primary and secondary research across a range of prisons in England and Wales, this chapter presents a summary of the current state of knowledge surrounding the beneficial impact of sport in prison, while drawing on illustrative examples of policies and practices in the prison estate in England and Wales. The challenges and opportunities associated with promoting sport in prison are discussed in the context of the broader challenges of delivering services in our prisons during a time of overcrowding and austerity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Companion to Rehabilitative Work in Criminal Justice
EditorsPamela Ugwudike, Hannah Graham, Fergus McNeill, Peter Raynor, Faye Taxman, Chris Trotter
ISBN (Electronic)9781315102832
ISBN (Print)9781138103320
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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