Did you know that women make up less than 40% of all qualified coaches.
Q: Tell us about your role at WSFF...
A: I'm the Consultancy Manager and my main role is to ensure that the hard work of the Insight and Innovation team is shared with the sector and beyond. Supporting and learning from those who deliver sport and fitness opportunities to women and girls is also a core element of my work.
Q: What has your career involved so far?
A: Despite an academic background in economics and politics, my passion for sport has meant that all of my gainful employment to date has been in the sport and leisure sector. From working as a sports coach in school/ university holidays, I then moved to working for a local authority leisure services team to support my own competitive aspirations in athletics. In preparation for the 2002 Commonwealth Games I then took the decision to relocate to Birmingham to work with one of the UK's top athletics coaches. Despite injury problems, meaning I did not qualify for the team, it did lead to a position with UK Athletics and 5 years of valuable experience working for an NGB. Hankering a move back down south led me to WSFF and a great opportunity for me to harness my enthusiasm for sport and fitness and hopefully to inspire others through this!
Q: If you could change only one thing to have a positive impact on women and girls' activity levels, what would it be?
A: Difficult question - but if listening to my friends, when I talk about what it is that I do is anything to go by, it would have to be the initial experience that girls get put off sport at school. Some of my friend are still seem visibly scarred by this ordeal... Miss xxxxx you know who you are! And it's this early negative experience that's put them off for life.
Q: What's your favourite sport?
A: Obviously I love athletics, but I'll pretty much try, or watch, any activity that doesn't involve heights.
Q: Most memorable sporting event?
A: This would have to be watching my then training partner, and friend, Ashia Hansen win the Triple Jump at the 2003 Indoor World Championships in Birmingham. Knowing everything that she had gone through to make that dream a possibility made the moment all the more special and I don't mind admitting that I shed a tear or two!
If you ask my mum the same question - she would say watching me in my first race - age 3, ( the brothers and sisters race at my brothers sports day). Once I passed the finishing line, I then continued to complete several laps of the playing field before one of the teachers finally managed to corner me.
Q: Give us a fascinating fact about yourself:
A: Orange Smarties are my favourites. (I've said this in the hope that Nestle may sent me a lifetime supply).