Which sport are you made for? Take our 60 second test

Which sport are you made for? Take our 60 second test

Organisation: BBC News Visual Journalism team (United Kingdom)

Publication Date: 04/09/2015



News data app of the year (small newsroom, large newsroom). Our project was designed to drive up public participation in sport. To do this we used the buzz around Glasgow’s Commonwealth Games as a backdrop and set off to match our readers with a sport from the Glasgow games which would be the best fit for them. It was our hope that this would inspire people to take up a new sport or re-kindle a love of a sport that they had not played since their schooldays. This was no easy task. Having decided to base the project around a quick quiz we needed an original set of data to identify those attributes needed to perform well across over 20 different sporting disciplines. The data also needed to have some rigour, as we didn’t want people to try our quiz only to find we had matched them with a sport that was hopelessly inappropriate. After some research we decided to partner with sports scientists at the University of Loughborough. They defined 13 characteristics key to determining an individual’s ability to perform well in particular sports. Now we had one part of the puzzle. What we needed next was a way to match a user’s assessment of their own skills with these models of the sporting ideal from Loughborough. To help us sense check our maths for match-making we called on the statisticians at the University of Westminster. Category 3: Best News Data App of the Year (Large Newsroom) We now had a model for over 20 sports and a sound way of connecting those models with our readers’ results from the quiz. The quiz received 1.7 million unique browsers in a single day and was shared 39,000 times on social media during the period of the Commonwealth Games. The quiz pointed people towards websites where they could find out more about the sports they had been matched with. Those sites reported a large increase in referrals during the time the quiz was promoted; the sites included the BBC’s Get Inspired pages as well as the governing bodies of the sports involved. THe app was also used live on air by the BBC Breakfast TV news programme and BBC Radio 5 Live by presenters and guests as part of their Commonwealth Games coverage.

Technologies used for this project:

We used R - for the data processing and D3 for the visualisations.
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