Research and Insight

Research and Insight

Research and Insight

At the forefront of developing research into VI sport participation, British Blind Sport utilise this insight to develop our services and support partners to meet the needs of VI people in sport.

British Blind Sport are committed to providing a wide variety of opportunities across the sporting landscape for people living with sight loss. Conversely, being encouraged to get involved in sport and enjoying the expertise of a coach who can confidently work with a VI person can literally be life changing for everyone involved.

Please find a list of our research reports below.

Two adults are helping a VI child to walk on a balancing beam

The Exploration of Motor Competence in Children and Young People with Visual Impairment

The research examines motor competence in children and young people with a visual impairmentIt looks to understand the sport and physical activity habits of children with visual impairments, as well as identify any gaps in physical development and or motor competence in comparison with their sighted peers. The study also looks at how participation in sport and physical activity affects the mental and social wellbeing of young people with visual impairments.

Download the interim summary report
Download the interim summary report plain text
Download the full interim research report
Download the full interim research plain text


BBS Member and Trustee Laura Turner playing Goalball at the Festival of Sport 2016

Small changes, Big difference: Making physical activity accessible for visually impaired women

This report published by British Blind Sport and Women in Sport in 2016 is the first of its kind to explore how sport and physical activity affects the lives of visually impaired (VI) women. It looks at the specific challenges visually impaired women can face when accessing sporting opportunities and aims to give a better understanding of how to overcome the barriers to participation for VI women.

Download the research


Visually Impaired Horse Rider

VI Equestrian Activity Report

With support from Sport England, British Blind Sport and the Riding for the Disabled Association have collaborated on a research project to identify new insight about the barriers to taking part in horse riding that people with a visual impairment can face, and to better understand the support that coaches feel they need, in order to deliver equestrian activities for VI people with confidence.

Download the report

Active Beyond Education

Active Beyond Education?

This 2015 research study explores young disabled people’s experiences of sport and physical activity during the transition from education to adulthood. Active Beyond Education? was commissioned by six of the UK’s National Disability Sports Organisations, in partnership with Activity Alliance and supported by Sport England. The research aims were to:

  • Better understand reasons for the decline on disabled people’s participation in sport and physical activity, during the transition from education to adulthood.
  • Recommend how to promote and maintain engagement in sport and physical activity among young disabled people.

Download the accessible PDF version

Download the Word document version

Junior members at the VI Football Tournament

Overcoming Barriers to Participation Research

A 2014 research study exploring how blind and partially sighted people overcome the barriers to participation to enjoy a lifetime of sport. This extensive study explored the barriers that restrict visually impaired people from enjoying sport and how successful participants have overcome those challenges. We worked with over 200 visually impaired people during this study.

Download the Research