45.4 million multiple-time competitors are most ever in NSGA study history.
GREENDALE, Wis. - More people went bowling in 2005 than at any time in at least 22 years, according to the newest National Sporting Goods Association Sports Participation study.
The study, which charts people age 7 and older participating more than once in the calendar year, said bowling had 45.4 million bowlers last year. That's up 3.5 percent from the 43.8 million in 2004 and up 15.2 percent from the 39.4 million in 2003. It also beat bowling's previous survey high of 44.8 million in 1997.
"Bowling is hot," said Larry Weindruch, NSGA's director of communications.
Bowling ranked No. 5 of the 41 sports studied, the same place it was rated in 2004 and 2003 after moving up from sixth. Exercise walking was first at 86 million followed by swimming (58), exercising with equipment (54.2) and camping (46). Exercise walking has held the No. 1 spot each year since 1990. NSGA has conducted the study annually since 1984.