Sport England campaign tells people with health conditions they are 'undefeatable'

£3m campaign encourages people living with long-term health conditions to get active.

Sport England is supporting leading health charities in a nationwide campaign to help people with long-term health conditions overcome barriers to being active.

"We are undefeatable", by FCB Inferno, aims to support the one in four people in England who have a long-term health condition such as diabetes, cancer, arthritis or Parkinson’s, and inspire them to build physical activity into their lives.

The campaign is led by Sport England in collaboration with 15 health and social-care charities, including Age UK, Alzheimer’s Society, British Red Cross, Macmillan Cancer Support and the Stroke Association, with funding from The National Lottery.

While more than two-thirds (69%) of people with long-term health conditions say they would like to be more active, they are twice as likely to be inactive, a Sport England survey revealed. Research shows that even small amounts of activity can make a significant difference to health and well-being.

The number of people with long-term health conditions in England is expected to rise from 15 million to 18 million by 2025, according to the Department of Health. 

The £3m campaign features a cast of real people with health conditions from across England. Set to the track Thats Life, the film portrays a more realistic view of getting active, including unconventional exercises and the unique struggles and successes experienced by people with health conditions. 

The work was written by Sarah Lefkowith, art directed by Nicole Chen and directed by JJ Augustavo through Knucklehead. Manning Gottlieb OMD handles media planning and buying. 

Activity will include a 60-second TV ad, debuting on 2 September, as well as radio, social media and sponsored search that drives people to visit WeAreUndefeatable.co.uk or use the hashtag #WeAreUndefeatable for tips on getting active. Fourteen social spots concentrate on individuals from the main film, such as Simone, 33, who was born with a congenital heart defect that led to a stroke, but now tries to walk two miles every day.

Sport England will also distribute resource packs at every GP surgery and community pharmacy in England as part of a wider programme to help healthcare professionals promote physical activity to patients. 

Sharon Jiggins, executive vice-president at FCB Inferno, said: "The idea was born from the core insight that the target audience do not feel that traditional exercise regimes are for them. They need something that reflects the highs and lows of their conditions and that no one day is like the next. 

"The campaign needed to be empowering and encourage spontaneity versus having a set plan… Small victories add up."

Sport England will repeat its survey at the end of October and November and track a cross-section of people for six months to measure whether there has been a shift in audience perceptions and behaviours, according to Sarah Ruane, Sport England’s strategic lead for health. 

FCB Inferno and Sport England previously created the award-winning "This girl can" campaign, which encouraged women to get active.