Getting more young people to be physically active

Together with NOC*NSF, we are on a mission to get more young people in the Netherlands to be physically active.
Forty &


We’re currently in the process of running a series of experiments with our target group to validate the desirability of our solution.


validated problem; validated target group; validated solution direction


We went from a problem definition to a simulation experiment in only 7 weeks.

Bigger picture

Being physically active is very important for our health, no matter the age. And those who turn regular exercise into a habit at a young age are more likely to keep that habit later on in life. However, building this type of healthy habit is not always straightforward or easy for youth.

How can we stimulate young people to be physically active?


Which problem did we focus on?

Elaborate “jobs-to-be-done” research helped us identify the drivers and barriers for young people to be physically active. Teenagers want to try things out in a socially safe environment to see what type of sport would fit them. It turned out, however, that the barriers to participate in a try-out or introduction lesson are often too high.

What solutions did we come up with?

Creative sessions with NOC*NSF resulted into four concepts that involve an app that facilitates sports challenges for exercising at home. However, an elaborate desirability test among the target audience showed that doing sports challenges at home was not likely to contribute to a sustainable solution. The core of the solution, as it turned out, should focus on helping the target audience try new sports activities outside the home. An app that would support this still seemed relevant.

How did our audience respond to our solution?

The desirability test was followed by desk research to learn from best practices from existing sports initiatives. Insights from this research lead to a concept iteration. Instead of facilitating sports challenges at home the focus had shifted to facilitating brand new sports activities: combining existing sports, designed for fun and failure, would lead to sports that nobody had ever done before. We are currently setting up experiments to validate this concept on a larger scale.

Curious how we can work with you?

Get in touch with Jan Willem.

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Forty Team

Sacha Boekelder
Innovation strategist
Linda Smit
Service designer
Jan-Willem van Beek


Remco Nieuwenhuis
Sam de Vor
Garage2020 case

Maliebaan 11

+31 (0)30 2737 422