Physical Recreation

The Physical Recreation section of The Duke of Ed encourages you to get active and improve your physical performance. You can choose individual or team activities; competitive or non-competitive activities.

Activity examples

  • Ball sports and team sports: basketball, football, hockey, netball, rugby, volleyball, water polo.
  • Movement and dance: aerobics, circus sports, dancing, gymnastics, martial arts, yoga.
  • Outdoors and adventure: caving, orienteering, snowboarding, surfing.
  • Racquet games: badminton, squash, tennis.
  • Other: archery, athletics, bowling, cycling, equestrian, skateboarding, swimming, walking.

Find more ideas about ways to get active or check out the list of Award activity ideas (PDF, 226.3 KB) or  (RTF, 7.4 MB) .


  • You don’t need to be part of a club—but you will need an adult with skills and experience in your chosen activity to help you and be your assessor.
  • You can count an activity you do during school or university but you need to prove you are doing most of the activity in your own time.
  • You can do the same activity through the different levels of The Duke of Ed—you just need to show you’re improving and building on your skills at each level.
  • You’re encouraged to pick 1 activity for each Award and stick to it. If this isn’t possible, you can do more than 1 activity to meet the requirements. For example, if your activity is seasonal, you can choose one activity for winter and another for summer.

Time commitment

You need to do an average of 1 hour per week in your chosen activity over a minimum of:

  • Bronze level—3 months (6 months if you choose Physical Recreation as your major*)
  • Silver level—6 months (12 months for direct entrants** who choose Physical Recreation as their major*)
  • Gold level—12 months (18 months for direct entrants** who choose Physical Recreation as their major*).

*A major is an award section for which you have to complete an extra 3 to 6 months of activity (the length of time depends on your award level). Only new participants need to complete a major—that is, all Bronze participants as well as direct entrants at the Silver and Gold levels. You can choose 1 of Voluntary Service, Skills or Physical Recreation as your major.

**A direct entrant means you have not completed the level below the one you are entering (Bronze for Silver; Silver for Gold).

Helpful information