Getting Children in North Yorkshire off to an Active Start

Increased levels of activity and active play during the early years has a significant impact on health and wellbeing, a positive impact on brain development, improved physical literacy, and a readiness to learn.

North Yorkshire Sport and North Yorkshire Council are excited to be rolling out Active Start – a new programme to help young children in North Yorkshire to be physically active in their Early Years setting.

Active Start has been created to inspire and increase activity levels in the early years through activity and active play to help children to be healthy, to learn and be active for life. By supporting practitioners, teachers and families to be active together more often, it will strengthen physical literacy and the readiness to learn.

Thanks to funding from the Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board (ICB), North Yorkshire will have its own workforce to deliver to staff working in private, voluntary, independent, and school-based early years settings. The learning for staff will look at the theory behind the programme and the importance of physical play and activity, allow attendees to try the activities, network with others, and build their confidence. Staff that attend a workshop will receive a pack with information and activity cards for their setting. Follow-up sessions and further learning opportunities, including supporting work with their families, will be developed over the course of the funding.

Active Start has been developed by Active Cumbria as an early years programme for children up to the age of 7. The programme is being supported by North Yorkshire Sport, North Yorkshire Council, Brimham’s Active, and Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust to establish the trainer workforce, programme reach, and sustainability as well as working to ensure the areas of most need are benefiting from the funding.

“We are very pleased to be introducing the Active Start programme, developed by our colleagues at Active Cumbria, into North Yorkshire and working with the Council to lead on the upskilling of the Early Years workforce across the county. Giving young people access to high quality movement and play at an early age is vital to supporting their development and helping them on the pathway to active lives, which in turn will support their health and well-being as they grow and develop. A big thank you to the ICB for their investment and all the partners involved.”

David Watson, Chief Executive, North Yorkshire Sport.

“We are delighted to be working with North Yorkshire Sport to bring the Active Start Programme to North Yorkshire as part of our public health work to improve the health and wellbeing of young children and families. This will enable us to skill up the early years workforce to support young children and their families to build more activity into their lives. Through targeting areas of greatest need in the county we aim to reduce health inequalities and improve overall health and wellbeing.”

Helen Ingle, Public Health Manager, North Yorkshire Council.

The first funded training session held in Harrogate on 9th October is now fully booked however, to register your interest in attending training held at venues across the county, visit

If you are interested in becoming part of the trainer workforce, or you are an organisation who wants to support Active Start, visit:

For more information contact or visit

To find out more, a short video can be watched here

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