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Date: 10/1/2017

Across Europe, the week of 23 to 30 September was a particularly active one, as people embraced the European Week of Sport. The innovation from the European Commission is designed to promote sport and physical activity across the continent, regardless of age, background or fitness level.


The European Handball Federation fully supports the initiative, which is promoted with the #BeActive hashtag. This year, as in 2015 and 2016, the EHF welcomed all 50 of their member federations to participate in the ‘European Open Day of Handball’, with the goal of involving players, children, teachers and parents in various handball-related activities.


Clubs and national federations across Europe participated in the Week of Sport, with the mascot for the upcoming EHF EURO 2018 in Croatia, Tor, taking part in the opening ceremony at Jarun Lake alongside players from Champions League team HC PPD Zagreb.


“It was a great privilege to be a small part of this great project. My wife and I are both sportsman, but I keep telling everyone that it is of outmost importance to practice every day. Everybody should find at least one hour daily to walk or to run or to visit a gym. I will always support this kind of activity because it is also my responsibility to educate other people of all the benefits that come from exercising,” says Zagreb’s Damir Bicanic.


The idea for the European Week of Sport came about in 2008, when the European Commission outlined the need for campaigns that would increase public awareness and change behaviour. In 2014, the plan for ‘The Week’ was announced, with the first held in 2015.


“Engagement in sport and physical activity is at an all-time low. In many Member States, this is a trend getting worse, not better. It’s not just people’s health and well-being that suffers; it’s our society and economy overall,” says the official website of the European Week of Sport.


“The European Week of Sport is our response to encourage all Europeans to get up and #BeActive. It is a truly European movement that began in 2015 and has inspired millions of people in 32 countries to #BeActive in their daily lives.”


In 2016, more than 15,000 events were held across Europe, with a total of 10 million participants. The #BeActive message was estimated to have reached 200 million people in 2016.