Dame Katherine Grainger to address value of medal success to nation

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Katherine Grainger at Speed Skating (UK Sport )

Dame Katherine Grainger, Chair of UK Sport, will address the positive link between medal investment and grassroots sport and recreation at the Sport and Recreation Alliance’s 2018 Fit for the Future Convention. 

The Fit for the Future Convention, which takes place in Loughborough on the 30 January 2018, brings leaders of the sport and recreation sector together to learn how to tackle the challenges facing sport and recreation.

Dame Katherine will be on the panel discussion, Medal success – so what?, to discuss with industry leaders in the sector how high-performance investment can have an positive impact on underrepresented groups and reach inactive people.

Dame Katherine Grainger, Chair of UK Sport said: “As the body charged with delivering success at the Olympic and Paralympic Games to inspire the nation, UK Sport believes that the impact of investing in our athletes’ success has far reaching benefits for the nation. Our own extensive research across a number of years demonstrates clearly that Olympic and Paralympic success instils a sense of national pride, ambition and achievement, that improved facilities for elite athletes benefit local communities and that hosting major sporting events inspires participation and boosts the economy.

“It is now well established that, whenever people are motivated to take up sport or physical activity, it is likely to lead to improvements in their physical and mental wellbeing and generate other benefits related to their individual development.

“The Fit for the Future Convention will be a fantastic opportunity to explore the important role that high-performance sport can play in getting the nation active and discuss how the sector can work together to tackle the challenges facing sport and recreation.”

Access to funding has become increasingly competitive in the sector. The Government sport strategy, Sporting Future, initiated a step-change in how success is judged with the introduction of five outcomes and National Lottery funding is in decline.

Sport and recreation is a good investment – now prove it is the 2018 theme of the Fit for the Future Convention and will focus on how as a sector, sport and recreation can do better at demonstrating its impact. Sport and recreation is a tool to help solve some of society’s biggest problems and by getting better at evidencing impact, the sector will be better placed to tap into other areas of funding, such as corporate and individual giving.  

Emma Boggis, CEO of the Sport and Recreation Alliance commented: “Sport and recreation provides the best preventative solution to many of society’s biggest challenges. But demonstrating that and making sure that this message is heard loud and clear isn’t easy. How our nation currently funds high-performing athletes has gained a lot of attention recently, so we are delighted to welcome Dame Katherine to the Fit for the Future Convention where one of the topics we will be exploring is the important role that high-performance sport can play in getting the nation active.”