On International Women’s Day (8/3/2023) the BBC and the OU launched a 4-part podcast series for The Sports Desk called ‘Women’s Sport Matters’ aimed at exploring important topics affecting female athletes. The podcasts presented by Katie Smith and produced by Jonathan McKeith feature #TeamOUsport academics alongside other experts and several top level female athletes.
Episode 1: We’re not all the same. Period
In this episode the panel of rugby player Daisie Mayes, former distance runner Pippa Woolven, senior lecturer in sport and fitness Simon Rea, Dr Emma Ross from the Well HQ, and sports reporter Fi Tomas discuss how the menstrual cycle affects performance and some of the myths around periods in sport.
- Listen to the episode: We’re not all the same. Period
- Read the associated BBC article: RED-S: Pippa Woolven’s experience and awareness activism
- Take the quiz: What is fact and what is fiction when it comes to periods in sport? By Simon Rea
Episode 2: Changing what we wear
From wearing the right sports bra to avoiding white shorts women’s sportswear is important. In this episode Ellie Cardwell (England netballer), Dr Jessica Pinchbeck (senior lecturer in sport and fitness), Laura Youngson (co-founder of IDA sports), and Tonje Lerstad (Norwegian beach handball player) examine how women’s sportswear is evolving.
- Listen to the episode: Changing what we wear
- Read the associated BBC article: Sports bras: England netballer Eleanor Cardwell on finding the right fit
- Read more from the OU: Why does women’s sportswear need to change? By Jess Pinchbeck
Episode 3: Which heals quicker – the body or the mind?
This episode featuring Paralympian Kadeena Cox, England footballer Esme Morgan, and sport psychologist Dr Caroline Heaney explores the psychological impact of injury and outlines why mental recovery is just as important as physical recovery.
- Listen to the episode: Which heals quicker – the body or the mind?
- Read the associated BBC article: Kadeena Cox and Esme Morgan on the mental impact of injuries
- Take the quiz: Are you mentally ready to heal from your sports injury? By Caroline Heaney
Episode 4: Exercise me, influence me
In this episode the panel of Kat Merchant (former England rugby player and personal trainer), Sabrina Pace-Humphreys (founder of the charity Black Trail Runners), Candice Lingam-Willgoss (senior lecturer in sport and fitness), Becky Grey (BBC Sport), and Alexia Clark (Instagram Fitness Influencer) explore the challenges and benefits of staying active.
- Listen to the episode: Exercise me, influence me
- Read the associated BBC article: Sabrina Pace-Humphreys: ‘It’s my medication’ – how running saved a life
- Read more from the OU: Five top tips for becoming more active. By Candice Lingam-Willgoss
Lead academic for the podcast series = Professor Ben Oakley
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT SOME OF THE TOPICS COVERED IN THIS PODCAST SERIES CLICK HERE TO TRY SOME OF OUR FREE COURSES, INCLUDING OUR COURSE ‘ SUPPORTING FEMALE PERFORMANCE IN SPORT AND FITNESS’.