Promoting the power of play


Play is a vital part of children's physical and cognitive development.

Sport NZ is supporting and advocating for play in several ways throughout New Zealand. On this page, you’ll find links to resources such as guides to develop play awareness within your organisation, videos about how to encourage play and what to think about when designing spaces for children’s play. You’ll also find videos about each of our Play Principles, and information about physical literacy – which starts with children’s play.

It has been taken for granted that play has always been, and will always be a part of New Zealand childhoods. Sports heroes, heroines and humanitarians alike talk of the richness and value they experienced as young people who developed physical skills through play.  

However, levels of play are in decline due to shifting cultural values, denser urbanisation and as a result fears about children’s safety. So, how are we supporting our kids to navigate these new challenges?

Our play overview tells you what we’re doing for play. 

For any clubs, local councils, sports trusts or organisations wanting to develop their capacity for play, the Five Phases of Play document will guide you to reflect, act and implement. 




Helpful links