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Watch disabled people aren't competitive film

(Disabled people aren't competitive film transcript)

For far too long disabled people have faced misconceptions and presumptions on what is and isn’t possible, including in sport. It's time to move the conversations on, open people's minds and shift out-dated views on disability. 

Launched on 15 July, who says? gives positive evidence, resources and guidance to replace these negative ideas. The campaign films focus on six perceptions and provide upbeat insight from a mixture of disabled and non-disabled people. 

The campaign was created in response to Activity Alliance’s Taking part with disabled people: perceptions research, which explored non-disabled people’s attitudes on inclusive activity. The findings show a lack of understanding could be causing long-lasting barriers for disabled people. For the least active audience in our country, people’s attitudes can make or break activity experiences.

This page focuses on the perception - disabled people aren't competitive

What do we know?

  • One in five (20%) non-disabled people were concerned that disabled people taking part with non-disabled people may impact the team dynamic. One in six (16%) felt it would lower the overall standard of the club’s/team’s performance. Taking part with disabled people report
  • Those without known experience of delivering to disabled people were much more likely to feel that inclusive sessions would change the fundamental nature of their sport (56% vs 31%). And that they would negatively impact non-disabled participants (43% vs 13%). Delivering activity to disabled people report 

Calling time on this perception

As the statistics show above, it is not unusual for you or your organisation to think disabled people aren’t competitive. What’s important is your enthusiasm to learn more. And Activity Alliance with our members have ways to support you on this journey.

Who says? empowers people, on and off the field of play, to challenge their own and other's perceptions.

In reality, we all have levels of competitiveness. That may or may not be in sport. Disabled people take part in high performance and grassroots sport. Some people gain more enjoyment from competitive sport and disabled people are no different. Competition is part of the experience when you progress in elite sport. There are winners and there are losers. Rules, standards and medals all matter. You only have to watch the Paralympics to see the tears of happiness and frustration.

In daily life, disabled people are competing all the time. For that job we’ve always wanted or the exam results we’ve revised hard for. Or to prove someone wrong about our capabilities. Everyone can be competitive, not just non-disabled people.

Events programme

Opportunities for disabled people to take part in activities can often be limited or challenging. Many providers do not feel they have the expertise or capacity. They may not have the time or knowledge to deliver quality event experiences. Our well-respected and experienced events team works with all types of organisations. We want to ensure more disabled people can access accessible opportunities.

For more information, visit our events programme page. Email the events team. Call 0161 228 2868.

National Disability Sports Organisations

The National Disability Sports Organisations (NDSOs) are a good starting point for advice, support and opportunities. They can provide useful information on adapting sports for people of all ages with specific impairments.

The eight NDSOs are: British Blind Sport, Cerebral Palsy Sport, Dwarf Sports Association UK, LimbPower, Mencap, Special Olympics Great Britain, UK Deaf Sport and WheelPower.

Find out more about the NDSOs here.

ParalympicsGB classification

Classification is the process by which Paralympic athletes are placed in the most appropriate group for competing following an assessment of their impairment.

Find out more about classification.

Call time on negative perceptions with us

Taking the conversation beyond the #WhoSays hashtag is important to us. It’s crucial we talk honestly and openly about matters that affect disabled people’s activity, like policy, funding and promotion. We hope the campaign leads to bigger conversations, greater collaboration and wider systemic responses.

If your organisation would like to get involved, has a story to share or you have a great idea for the campaign, please contact or call 0161 228 2868. We have a range of digital supporter materials available for organisations and the media to use. 

Who says we can’t change this perception and more? Thank you for your support.  

Who says in an orange box graphic