February 2024, Articles

Healthy Women in Performance Sport looking beyond Paris

While most eyes in the high performance sport sector are firmly focussed on Paris 2024, the Healthy Women in Performance Sport (HWiPS) team, led by Dr Sue Robson, are looking further ahead as they work to finalise the HWiPS strategy.

“The next six months leading up to Paris provide our group with a window to move our HWiPS strategy from the planning phase to delivery,” says Sue.

And a key driver of that process was the inaugural HWiPS stakeholders and partners workshop held in December.

The workshop, involving more than 60 partners from across the sector including tertiary institutions, brought a broad lens to the revised strategy draft (its Vision, The Challenge and Strategic Outcomes) to answer the key question – do we have what we need to deliver the core outcomes, says Sue.

“The diversity of people in the room and online enabled us to make strong progress on defining our vision to empower and support women and girls thriving through performance sport, and in particular what we mean by thriving.

“There was fantastic support from our partners and stakeholders for the vision and our strategic outcomes were received with both enthusiasm and passion.”

Sue says that, importantly, the workshop stimulated conversations which unearthed areas that need some improvement.

“We have a clear path forward so we are able to move from planning to delivery following the Paris cycle.

“Our goal now is to combine the rich tapestry of contributions from the various engagements across NSOs, leadership and coaches, Athlete Performance Support teams and athletes, spanning formal and informal sessions, with the workshop findings.”

The next step for Sue and her team is to finalise the HWiPS strategy in alignment with HPSNZ’s strategy (2024-2028) and to develop a clear roadmap of projects and research foci for the short, medium and long term, designed to achieve the strategic outcomes.

“The workshop has also helped us better understand our role in the eyes of our partners and stakeholders making NSO and partner connection, collaboration and contribution a critical part of all work, as well as ongoing engagement and contribution from coaches and athletes as the projects develop,” says Sue.

“We are committed to being ready to deliver our programme into ‘market’ after Paris.  But it is also important to know that our door will always be open for ongoing engagement whether by formal feedback tools or informal coffee catch ups.”