Skip to content.

The national charity and leading voice for disabled people in sport and activity

Menu. Open and close this menu with the ENTER key.

Expert-led webinar discusses physical activity workforce

A recent Activity Alliance webinar saw experts discuss how to support disabled into the physical activity workforce.

Man using the rowing machine in a gym with a woman personal trainer, who uses a wheelchair.

The hour-long session saw contributions from AKD Solutions, UK Coaching and Disability Sports Coach. Ladi Ajayi, Head of the Sport Division at AKD Solutions, chaired the meeting that was attended by almost 150 people.

He began by speaking to Jess Capelli Beavan, Equity, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Manager at UK Coaching.

Jess shared the work she has been a part of in making sure that their policies and practices are inclusive. UK Coaching have prioritised diversity and inclusion internally with the aim of improving the quality of advice they share externally. She talked through the two year process that she has overseen, and left attendees with three key words:

"Share. Share internally what you’re doing, share what’s working share what isn’t working. That will help you identify opportunities moving forward.
"The next one is to learn. Learn from each other. Learn from a role perspective. So what is it that your role does and how can you be considerate and mindful of EDI, and embedding that into your role.
"The third is to connect. That’s connecting externally as well as internally. So don’t be afraid to connect to external partners to say, you know what, maybe we haven’t got this quite right. So ‘can you help us with that?’"

The webinar drew on figures released in Activity Alliance’s Annual Disability and Activity Survey. It showed that only 22% of disabled people said they ‘see people like me’ working in sports and physical activity roles.

Temiday Johnson works as a coach for Disability Sports Coach, he shared his lived experience of joining the activity workforce as a disabled person. He talked passionately about how he had developed personally, and the progress he has seen in those he coaches. He also touched on advice he would pass on to anyone wanting to become a leader themselves:

"You don’t have to change anything about yourself. Just be yourself…You can achieve it if you work hard and try."

The final participant to speak was Sarah Brown-Fraser, Head of Communications and Policy at Activity Alliance who also sits on the board for Greater Manchester Moving. In her discussion with Ladi she highlighted key things that can be done at all levels to improve representation at all levels. She also touched on practical advice for organisations looking to support more disabled people into activity roles.

This webinar was part of a series based on the findings in Activity Alliance’s Annual Disability and Activity Survey. You can sign up now to Inclusive Activity - Taking a person-centered approach, taking place on 27 February.

You can watch the full webinar on our YouTube channel.