Basketball plays a bigger role in helping children and young people be active than any team sport other than football.
That is the finding of Sport England's second annual Active Lives Survey.
The study shows more than a million youngsters played basketball at least once in the 2018/19 academic year - an increase of 15% on the 2017/18 figures.
That growth is the third biggest, behind cricket and dodgeball.
It means that, when combined with the number of adults regularly playing the sport - 280,900 - there are 1,322,600 players, making basketball the second biggest team sport after football and ahead of rugby.
Basketball has gains to make at the younger end of the age-group spectrum with football, dodgeball, cricket and rugby ahead of it in the Year 1 and 2 bracket, though there has been a 23% increase.
And overall, fewer girls play regular sport than boys.
Basketball England CEO Stewart Kellett said: "It is so positive that basketball is providing great opportunities for a growing number of children and young people.
"The growth of Basketball England's satellite clubs programme and Jr NBA, our provision of Slam Jam for younger children, as well as the introduction of organised under-12 leagues, are all steps in the right direction.
"Also, the continued efforts of the local basketball clubs, volunteers and coaching network continues to reach out to schools and new players, and support more young people. Our strategic plan highlights the need to grow basketball together and these are positive signs for the collective effort of the basketball community.
"Thank you to everyone in basketball who continues to make a difference to the lives of so many young people.
"We are not complacent and know more must be done to give girls and young women better access our great sport – which we are addressing through our All Girls campaign - and to help less affluent families."
01 Jul 2020