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The best way to improve public health is by increasing the number of sports facilities

IELTS Writing Test Task 2 Essay

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task. Write about the following topic:

Some people say that the best way to improve public health is by increasing the number of sports facilities.

Others, however, say that this would have little effect on public health and that other measures are required. Discuss both these views and give your own opinion.

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.
IELTS Essays

Cambridge IELTS 9 Academic Writing Test 3, Task 2, IELTS Essay Answer

Many people are concerned about the general poor level of health in people nowadays. Some groups advocate providing more public sports facilities while other groups believe alternative ways of improving public health might prove more successful.

There are already many sports centers in major cities and even in some smaller towns. This does not automatically mean that the public will use them. People need to be motivated to do exercise. They need to choose to be healthy. Can governments and interested groups make people want to be healthier? It is doubtful.

The most successful method employed by authorities to change public behavior, as seen from many cases in the past, is through coercion. People who want to be healthy are already doing exercise and taking care of themselves through their own free choice. If governments want o make the rest of the population become healthier through more exercise and using sports facilities then they will literally have to force them to do so.

We have seen that advertising campaigns do not work very effectively. Rising levels of obesity in many developed countries are no putting a serious strain on health services, to the point where they are now challenging smoking related diseases in terms of costs and resources required to treat them.

Making individuals responsible for their behavior through taxes, fines and penalties has been shown to be effective in the past. For example, some years ago a driver was not required to use their seat belt when driving. However, as a result of the amount of horrific road accidents and deaths which resulted, the government introduced the wearing of seat belts for drivers and passengers as mandatory; they changed the law, with fixed penalty fines following after a short transitional period.

When money is involved or there is a risk of breaking the law, it seems people think twice about their behavior. This could be a more effective solution to poor levels of public health as it would involve making the individual more responsible for their own health through charging or taxing them for health conditions which are clearly caused by their own poor habits or behavior.

No doubt some people would consider this an infringement on personal rights; however, it would surely ease the strain on public health services quickly and make people really think about the consequences of their unhealthy behavior. Governments have already banned smoking and drinking in public places in various countries, based on social and health reasons, how long before the banning of fast food in public places is also up for discussion.

How would you answer this IELTS essay question about the best way to improve public health is by increasing the number of sports facilities?
  • What are some major public health concerns in your country?
  • How do people keep fit, or what sports facilities do they use?
  • What would you recommend to improve public health?

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