New open data: Fusion Lifestyle publishes data to ‘remove the barriers to participation’ among those ‘typically inactive’ and invites feedback from data users
Announced today at the CSP Network Convention, Nottingham, Fusion Lifestyle — a leisure operator and registered charity providing sport, leisure and fitness activities, and encouraging local communities to get healthy and active — is the latest to open up physical activity data under the OpenActive initiative.
Starting today, data about Fusion Lifestyle’s exercise classes and other sessions will be made openly available for anyone to access, use and share and can be found at data.fusion-lifestyle.com.
Fusion Lifestyle has facilities in almost 100 locations across the UK, providing accessible and affordable services for all parts of the community, including those less active. In the last year the leisure operator’s facilities have received 26 million visits, of which 55% were women, 6 million were under 19s and 1.8 million were over 60s.
As part of the OpenActive initiative, Director of Business Development at Fusion Lifestyle, Tim Mills and its ICT team has worked collaboratively with Active Essex, imin, and more recently with support from the Open Data Institute, to publish and maintain its physical activity data in-house.
Tim Mills, Director of Business Development, shares Fusion Lifestyle’s motivations behind publishing open data to better connect with the communities it supports:
“Fusion’s key charitable objective is to promote the benefits of healthy lifestyles and encourage participation in sport and physical activity. In particular, Fusion seeks to remove the barriers to participation in order to enable and encourage more participation by those sections of the community who are typically inactive or less active than others. As a result, the organisation is constantly exploring new ways of ensuring that its high quality facilities and services are available to everyone on an inclusive and accessible basis.
In this context, Fusion has been working closely with imin and the Open Data Institute to open up key data sets to new partners and potential new customers. Fusion’s in-house ICT team has developed their own open API to maintain flexible control over the data Fusion is publishing. The team have developed the appropriate systems to ensure that the detail of the range of activities provided at Fusion’s leisure facilities in Essex is even more transparently available than before and that booking and payment processes for new customers are simplified as much as possible.
In so doing, Fusion’s aspiration is to encourage more and more non-participants and occasional participants to explore the various physical activities available at their local leisure facilities, to find something that suits their needs and interests and to start participating.
Fusion is now delighted to be formally launching the “opening up” of this information and will be closely monitoring impact over the next few months as partners and customers begin to take advantage of the additional accessibility”.
Testing, testing… calling all data users!
To ensure the data meets the needs of data users, Fusion Lifestyle and OpenActive are calling upon data users to test the data and share initial feedback by 19 March in GitHub or alternatively email firstname.lastname@example.org. Ongoing feedback is also welcomed on Github as use of the data develops and grows.
At OpenActive we’re bringing together sports and physical activity organisations from across the sector to make data on what, where and when physical activity sessions happen, openly available through open data. Our ambition is to get the UK’s 25% of inactive people active through promoting use of open data across the sector. This data will enable organisations to develop new and existing services that keep pace with the customer’s digital expectations, and make it easier for people to find and participate in sessions that are right for them.
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