Sporting Equals to launch new Insights series

Sporting Equals to launch new Insights series 

Sporting Equals, the charity that exists to actively promote greater involvement in sport and activity for disadvantaged communities particularly the black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) population have launched a new initiative entitled the “Sporting Equals  Insights  Series."  

Sporting Equals latest consumer research, conducted in partnership with the Department of Sociology at the University of Leicester looks specifically at the young Asian Pakistani female market (16-25). The research was carried out using focus group techniques and one-to-one interviews and has been supplemented with information drawn from other research carried out by  Sporting Equals. It provides valuable insight which sport providers can draw upon to make sport more inclusive for this segment and help increase participation. 

Sporting Equals insight into Young Asian Pakistani females identifies that these women face educational, employment and economic challenges alongside cultural barriers which impact on leisure and lifestyle choices. Finding the time, the right sort of motivation and the support meant there were limited opportunities for these women to pursue their interests in sport and physical activity.

Many of these young women were active at school and traced their relative lack of engagement in sport and physical activity after they left school linked to lack of confidence, available coaching, suitable facilities and adequate information and support.

Some women expressed a view that the male dominated nature of sport was often viewed by families as an activity for males rather than females. Very little support was given to females to engage in sport with a more direct push for girls to focus on academic studies.

It was important to have places where women could feel comfortable carrying out sport. Places needed to be more accessible for social and recreational sport activities to enable these women to engage with more of a push around local provision.

For many of these women having sports and exercise opportunities run by women for women was a critical factor in engagement, often there was more local demand than opportunities with local female activities oversubscribed. There was confidence that if opportunities were provided to train more  female coaches and instructors, then more women would come forward to challenge potential objections from male family members.

Achieving more opportunities to connect with sport and physical exercise might involve getting key figures involved in provision and instruction and improving local networks and chances of communication.    

Arun Kang   Sporting     Equals     CEO   commenting on the launch of the new insight series said,

"Our series will provide valuable insight into the key factors preventing and motivating BAME groups entering into sport and physical activity.

The series will also provide us with an outstanding opportunity to strengthen our partnership with the University of Leicester. " 

John Williams  Associate Professor and co-director of the Unit for Diversity, Inclusion and Community Engagement (DICE)  at the University of Leicester commenting on the joint venture said,

" Sporting Equals is at the forefront of work designed to increase sporting and physical activity opportunities for marginalised communities. It is especially important to hear the voices of people who are not regarded as 'typical' candidates for sporting activity and who are often 'missed' by sporting governing bodies and local providers.  These Insights add to our patchy knowledge and they will help immeasurably in devising effective policy which is both inclusive and popular."

Annie Zaidi, football coach, Sporting Equals Ambassador & winner of Helen Rollason Award for Inspiration at the 2015 Sky Sportswomen of the Year Award & has been named as one of The Independents 50 most influential women in sport. 

"Sporting Equal's work within BAME communities has helped to develop understanding about the cultural & religious factors that prevent people from BAME communities to engage actively in sporting activities. This then has a huge positive impact on wider society as over the years Sporting Equals have used this to help break down barriers & created community cohesion by delivering local & national sporting events, projects and courses to create active communities."

Note to Editors

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About Sporting Equals

Sporting Equals exists to actively promote greater involvement in sport and physical activity for disadvantaged communities particularly the black and minority ethnic population. We are the national partner of Sport England and advisors to the Department of Culture Media and Sport.

Our mission is to make a sustainable difference to the inclusion of all under represented communities in sport and physical activity so as to help increase participation, improve the long term opportunities and health outcomes of those communities as well as to grow elite level talent.

For more information about Sporting Equals, please visit the website:

To read the University of Leicester article, please click here.