Gone are the days where periods and menstrual cycles were taboo subjects. Our social media feeds are full of period pant adverts and prompts to download the latest menstrual tracker. Even Olympic athlete, Jessica Ennis, has turned her attention to the power of periods, launching her own sport specific menstrual tracking app just last month.
However, we know that 64% of girls will have quit sport by the time they finish puberty, and that 1 in 2 girls are quitting sport due to periods. So, when Head of PE, Nikki Aitchison suggested partnering with “Sport in Her Shoes” to help tackle this issue for young women in Scotland, Kirsty Nicholson, Head of The Mary Erskine School, was on board straight away.
Run in partnership with The Well HQ, ‘Sport in Her Shoes’ is part of a growing movement to improve the experience of girls and young women in sport.
The Sport in Her Shoes Conference will be hosted at The Mary Erskine School, on 26 September, to help empower pupils and teachers to better understand the female body, to bring science into practice and help us to reduce the stigma of talking about some of these topics.
Kirsty Nicholson, Head of The Mary Erskine School, said:
“It’s incredibly exciting to be the first School in Scotland to host a ‘Sport in Her Shoes’ Conference. We have run similar, collaborative events before, but this is such an important conversation and I am grateful to Nikki Aitchison for creating this important opportunity to break down the barriers young women face in Sport.”
“As well as opening up an honest dialogue about menstrual cycles and their effect on our bodies, this initiative also plays an important part in encouraging exercise in general, and a healthier way of life. We want all our pupils to find enjoyment in exercise. It’s about exploring sport to find something that suits you, and then understanding how to get the best from your body, so you can enjoy that experience to the fullest.”
The Conference is not just for the ESMS community. Pupils, PE teachers, coaches and sport directors from across Edinburgh are also invited to attend. On the day, attendees will hear from a host of experts in their field who will touch on topics such as the menstrual cycle, female centric nutrition, breast support, motivation and the female mindset, and how we can make coaching specific to females. There will also be a virtual event on Tuesday 20 September, for all parents and sports coaches interested in learning about and tackling the challenges of women and sport. While the Well-HQ content refers to girls and women, our events are open to anyone who would benefit from learning about the impact of female puberty on sport.
It is thanks to our dedicated teachers that we can bring these opportunities to life. Head of PE, Nikki Aitchison adds: “I’m really looking forward to sharing all this vital knowledge from the experts at The Well HQ with pupils from across Edinburgh. We need to do as much as we can, from an early age, to end the stigma around these subjects, and empower our pupils to really understand their bodies and all that they are capable of.”
To find out more about the event, and to secure your tickets, click here.