Adolescents’ support for an outdoor smoke-free policy at sports clubs in the Netherlands

Heike Garritsen*, Rein Distelvelt, Ingri Olsen, Ien Van De Goor, Anton Kunst, Andrea Rozema

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
119 Downloads (Pure)


Outdoor smoke-free policies (SFPs) at sports clubs may contribute to the prevention of smoking among adolescents. Adolescents’ support for such policy is important to its success. The aim of this study is to explore adolescents’ perceptions with regard to an outdoor SFP at sports clubs in the Netherlands.

Focus group discussions (n=27) were held with 180 participants (aged 13–18 years) at 16 sports clubs. Thematic analysis was used to analyze the data.

Participants generally supported an outdoor SFP at sports clubs. Five reasons for this support were reported: 1) children should not be exposed to smoking, 2) smoking and sports (clubs) do not fit together, 3) secondhand smoke is undesirable, 4) an outdoor SFP may enhance a sports club’s image, and 5) an outdoor SFP contributes to the prevention of smoking. Some participants voiced considerations against an outdoor SFP, arguing amongst others, that smokers need to be taken into account, and that problems may occur with compliance and enforcement. Support for an outdoor SFP was stronger among participants at clubs with an outdoor SFP than among those without such policy.

This study shows that adolescents generally support an outdoor smoke-free policy at sports clubs. After implementation, the outdoor SFP was generally experienced as a normal practice. These results could encourage sports clubs without an outdoor SFP to become smoke-free as well.
Original languageEnglish
Article number40
JournalTobacco Prevention & Cessation
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • adolescents
  • smoke-free policy
  • sports
  • support


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