PODCAST #42: Our Chair and CEO discuss improving the sport

England Athletics CEO Chris Jones and Chair Gary Shaughnessy join the podcast to reflect on some of the challenges facing the sport and how they can be seen as opportunities to make positive changes and improvements.

You’ll hear us cover everything from athletes and officials to coaches to competitions, clarifying the difference in focus between UK Athletics and ourselves, and discussing what can be done to embrace technology and increase numbers of participants, spectators and volunteers.

We also talk up the wider health and community benefits of the sport, including links between schools and clubs, while analysing the potential impact of the cost of living.

Gary Shaughnessy said:

“There are so many opportunities for people to engage and use their leisure time. We’ve got to make sure that athletics continues to stand out as exciting, dramatic, engaging and a sport that helps people realise their potential.”

Chris Jones said:

“The number of individuals participating in competitions across the country has declined, particularly amongst young people of the ages of 16, 17, 18 and upwards. That’s a challenge, but it’s also an opportunity if we think with an open mind about what we could do about this. It’s responsibility and accountability for all of us. At England Athletics, we’re going to be spending quite a lot of time in the close season reviewing the data and considering whether our service provision is as good as it could be.”

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Image: Nicolas Hoizey on Unsplash