Whenever I ride in a taxi, 8/10 times the driver will ask me about what I thought of the rugby or cricket, and I sheepishly admit I rarely watch sport.
What time I have outside work/ parenting/ domestic duties - I listen to music, read, plug in a guitar or drain our broadband data binge-watching a series (sometimes all activities simultaneously) which leaves scant time for sport.
For years I wondered if I was an anomaly in ‘sports-mad’ NZ until last week I saw an article about a downward trend with Kiwi’s consuming sport as entertainment, across the board but particularly among the younger generations.
Is the time-honoured talk about the ‘big game’ around the watercooler a thing of the past?
Recently, I was taking a client out for a coffee and we happened to stop at the lights across from a massive billboard with the latest Netflix show plastered on it – we both looked at each other and said simultaneously “which episode are you up to?” Which was funny, but proved to me that the binge-watching culture is becoming a warm medium for conversation along with the weather or how badly the Warriors got humiliated last weekend.
Could this signal a change in our cultural identity as a sports-mad nation, and perhaps open opportunities for more focus in the creative/ arts? Or will sports need to evolve as an entertainment form to capture the audience back? Something to explore next time!
But now if you’ll excuse me I’ve got just enough time to cram in the last 2 episodes of my latest fix – see you on the other side!
Research commissioned by a large sporting organisation and shared with the Herald shows sport's relevance - measuring participation, passion, consumption and attendance - among New Zealand adults has been in a downward slump for all but one of the past five years. The trend is particularly acute among younger generations, with a ratio of 3:1 being more passionate about entertainment than they are sport.