The fine folk at Sporting Pride Ireland came together with the aim to promote LGBT+ inclusion in sports – an area which may not have been the most welcoming in the past. Now they have also introduced a new initiative to help us all stay active and connected during these strange times.
Strava is an app mainly for runners and cyclists which encourages people to exercise and feel connected to others involved in sport as you log your workouts and receive support from friends.
Last month, as part of Pride celebrations, Sporting Pride Ireland teamed with GCN for a very special event as part of our In And Out Festival of LGBT+ Creativity.
Titled Standing Proud in Irish Sport: My Life as an LGBT+ Athlete, it featured Nikki Symmons, former hockey and cricket international and Ireland’s most-capped team player in history and Donal Óg Cusack, three-time All Ireland Hurling winner and the first elite Irish sportsman to come out as gay, who joined Anna Nolan for an informative and enlivening conversation.
Making sure the community feels welcome and encouraged to participate in sport is paramount. Research has shown that 55% of LGBT+ men and 56% of LGBT+ women are not active enough to maintain good health, compared with 33% and 45% respectively of the general public.
As a member of the Federation of Gay Games, Sporting Pride also offers LGBT+ sportspeople the opportunity to represent Ireland in international competitions.
While major sporting events for this year have had to be cancelled due to the pandemic, there are hopes that inclusion in larger events could be achievable from next year on. The Copenhagen EuroGames will take place alongside World Pride in 2021, while the Hong Kong Gay Games in 2022 will see the competition take place in Asia for the first time.
If you would be interested in joining Team Ireland as an athlete, a supporter or a volunteer, make sure to visit their website here.
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