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Chichester academic promotes women in sport at Abu Dhabi conference

Dr Elizabeth Pike, Head of Sport Development and Management, was on the opening panel of the Abu Dhabi International Conference on Women’s Sports, talking on the topic of women's health and wellbeing in sports.

She was joined on the panel by other prestigious speakers including Sheikha Nuaima Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah, chairwoman of the Organising Committee for Women’s Sports at the Gulf Cooperation Council for Arab States, and Raija Mattila, co-chair of the International Working Group on Women and Sports.

Dr Pike was speaking in her capacity as President of the International Sociology of Sport Association, as well as her role as Chair of the Anita White Foundation, based at the University of Chichester and set up to transform sporting opportunities for woman and girls around the world.

The conference was organised by the Fatima Bint Mubarak Academy for Ladies Sports and drew attendees from 17 Arab and other countries.

Dr Pike said the conference represented a boost to women’s sports and their status in the community, and hoped it was something that could be built on.

She said: “While there has been tremendous progress in sporting opportunities for females, there are still many constraints for women and girls around the world. For females who are unable to exercise, this can have significant health consequences as well as preventing access to fun and meaningful activities.

“It is crucial that opportunities are provided for conferences such as this, which bring together scholars, activists, policy-makers and practitioners to meet and share knowledge and experiences so that we might all better support developments in women's sport.”