The National Sports and Society Survey (NSASS) is a landmark survey of 4,000 U.S. adults that collects information on sports-related attitudes and the dimensions and contexts of sports involvement experiences. Specifically, the NSASS asks about one's:
This information is complemented with background information on the respondents and their reports of their health and well-being, behaviors, and social connections.
The purpose of the study is twofold. First, it seeks to gather comprehensive information about the extent to which people are involved in sports in the U.S. and the predictors of their sports involvement patterns. A central focus of this aim is to better understand sports involvement patterns, expenditures, and inequalities. Second, the study seeks to provide information that will enable analyses of the links between one's sports involvement experiences and one's attitudes, health and well-being, behaviors, and social connections. Overall, findings from the study are expected to improve our understanding of the patterns and implications of sports involvement and lead to evidence-based recommendations for how sports should be organized, offered, and endorsed.
The research team for the NSASS consists of Professor Chris Knoester, principal investigator, with support from members of CHRR and the Sports and Society Initiative (SSI) at The Ohio State University. Funding for the project has been provided by the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences through SSI.
Professor Knoester is an accomplished family sociologist who has taught sociology of sport classes for nearly 20 years. Along with his work on the NSASS, he is transitioning into sports sociology research.
Professor Knoester also has an extensive background in sports involvement. As an undergraduate, he attended Calvin College where he was an all-conference athlete in two sports and won a DIII National Championship in basketball. He was voted as an All-American basketball player and two-time Academic All-American—including being named as a GTE/CoSIDA Academic Player of the Year from among all non-DI schools. He played professionally in Malta before graduate school. Professor Knoester still plays and follows sports, but mostly with a parenting or scholarly emphasis, now.
After more than a year of intensive work in planning the survey project and then designing, testing, and preparing the survey instrument, the data collection efforts began in Fall of 2018 and ended in Spring of 2019. Thus, NSASS research is now beginning to be presented at academic conferences and submitted for potential publication. News and results are forthcoming.
Data was collected from 3,993 respondents from all 50 U.S. states and Washington, D.C. About 20% of respondents also reported on a randomly chosen focal child ages 6-17 who lives with them. Compared to the U.S. population, respondents were disproportionately female, white, and Midwestern. Post-stratification weighting techniques are being used to approximate the characteristics of U.S. adults for descriptive purposes. A more detailed methodological summary of the NSASS can be found on the SocArXiv website (DOI:10.31235/osf.io/mv76p).
Allison, Rachel, and Chris Knoester. 2021. "Gender, Sexual, and Sports Fan Identities." In: Sociology of Sport Journal. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.2020-0036.
Knoester, Chris, and B. David Ridpath. 2020. "Should College Athletes Be Allowed to Be Paid? A Public Opinion Analysis." In: Sociology of Sport Journal. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.2020-0015.
Knoester, Chris, B. David Ridpath, and Rachel Allison. 2021. “Should Athletes be Allowed to Protest during the National Anthem? An Analysis of Public Opinions among U.S. Adults.” In: Sociology of Sport Journal. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.2020-0153
Knoester, Chris, and Carter Rockhill. 2021. "Multiculturalism and Antiracism in Sports? U.S. Public Opinions about Native American Team Names and Mascots and the Use of Hijabs in Sports." In: Socius: Sociological Research for a Dynamic World. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/23780231211028681
Knoester, Chris, and Evan Davis. 2021. "Patriotism, Competition, Nationalism, and Respect for the Military in U.S. Sports: Public recognition of American Institutionalized Sports Nationalism." In: International Review for the Sociology of Sport. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/10126902211048769
Knoester, Chris, and Rachel Allison. 2021. "Sexuality, Sports-related Mistreatment, and Adults' Sports Involvement." In: Leisure Sciences. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01490400.2021.1895009
Sutton, Frances S., and Chris Knoester. 2021. "U.S. Women's Sport Consumption and Self-identified Fandom: An Exploration of Social Structural and Sociocultural Antecedents." In: International Review for the Sociology of Sport. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/10126902211068272
Warner, Mariah K., and Chris Knoester. 2022. "When Kids Hitting Each Other Is Okay: Examining U.S. Adult Support for Youth Tackle Football." In: Social Currents. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/23294965221074017
More than two dozen sports and society research projects, involving over twenty scholars from ten different institutions, are currently using the NSASS data. These projects include inquiries into:
(Major Research Questions include: How are people involved in sports during childhood, throughout the life course, and across generations? What leads to different involvement levels? How is involvement linked to financial and time commitments?)
(Major Research Questions include: How are sports experiences linked to health in childhood, adulthood, and over the life course? Why?)
(Major Research Questions include: How are sports watched and followed in childhood, adulthood, and over the life course? Who follows sports and why? How does it matter?
(Major Research Questions include: What do people think about the costs and benefits of sports? What do sports reveal and encourage in terms of cultural values? What are public opinions about controversial sports-related topics? Why?
We thank the NSASS respondents for their efforts and commitments in providing useful information to help in the study of sports and society issues!
Click on the questions to read corresponding answers. (Note: The FAQs were originally posted for prospective survey participants.)
It is a survey being conducted at the Ohio State University to study sports involvement and its implications for other areas of life. Prof. Chris Knoester (email@example.com) is the principal investigator of the study. CHRR at The Ohio State University is managing the survey design and data collection. Funding for the project has been provided by the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences through the Sports and Society Initiative. You can learn more about the survey by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org or calling: 877-529-2979 for further details.
Taking part in this survey is completely voluntary. You may answer don’t know or refuse any questions that you do not want to answer. If you decide not to take part or refuse to answer some of the questions, it will not affect your current or future relationship with The Ohio State University. If you decide to take part, you are free to withdraw at any time.
The American Population Panel is a group of volunteer members who agree to participate in social science and health related studies. Members of the American Population Panel will be contacted to take part in social science and health related research. The time commitment varies with each survey.
How many times do you receive $$$ for your opinions and reports about your life experiences? Sharing your opinions and experiences will also provide valuable information to scholars who are trying to better understand human behavior and offer ideas about how to improve society.
CHRR at The Ohio State University never sells or make public any personal information. Certain offices concerned with research at The Ohio State University may be asked to review your records if there is a problem. These are offices concerned with protecting your rights as a research participant. The people sponsoring the research may also have limited access to confidential data. The only information used for research is the answers to your questions.
Important organizations involved in protecting your privacy are: The Ohio State University Institutional Review Board or Office of Responsible Research Practices (1-800-678-6251) and CHRR at The Ohio State University (email@example.com or 877-529-2979).
We survey anyone between the ages of 21 to 65 years living in the U.S. It doesn’t matter if you love sports, hate sports, or just don’t care that much about them one way or the other. This survey is designed to take the “temperature” or a “snapshot” of the U.S. To do that we need answers from all types of folks. Men, women, parents, athletes, non-athletes, and persons from every racial-ethnic group are all eligible—everyone can participate in the survey and receive the $$$ incentive.
Feel free to spread the word so that others can contribute to social science research and can benefit from the $$$ incentives, too.
Respondents are members of the American Population Panel. Anyone 18 years or older and living in the U.S. can register for the APP to participate in a variety of surveys, including future rounds of the NSASS. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 877-529-2979 for more information.
CHRR at The Ohio State University is overseeing the management of NSASS. The survey can be taken in a web form on a computer, laptop, tablet or cellphone. You can also schedule for a phone-interview with a trained interviewer if you prefer. We can even send you a paper copy of the survey! We want to make the process of taking the NSASS convenient for you.
Absolutely, NSASS is supported by Android and iOS.
NSASS can be taken on any computer, laptop or tablet. It is supported by all web browsers such as Google Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer.
Currently we offer scheduled phone interviews. You can email email@example.com or call 877-529-2979 to schedule a phone interview with a trained professional.
Yes, NSASS can be taken using any web browser supported by macOS or iOS, such as Safari.
It is a comprehensive survey that generally takes about one hour to complete.
The survey design team at CHRR at The Ohio State University have ensured a simple and straightforward survey. However, if you feel you need assistance, please email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 877-529-2979 to schedule a phone interview with a trained professional at your convenience.
While your answers will be made available to researchers, your personal information will not be. A few folks can look at your personal information to do things like make sure the survey is completed and that you are a real person. However, none of the questions we ask involve information that would have to be disclosed by state law. Your personal information is never shared, sold or made public.
The National Sports and Society Survey (NSASS) aims to study sports involvement and its implications. Please visit www.nsass.org for more information about the survey.
Funding for the project has been provided by the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences through The Ohio State University Sports and Society Initiative (SSI).
Yes, we are interested in all kinds of people: fans and non-fans, married and non-married, people with and without children as long as you are between 21 and 65 years old and living in the U.S.