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St Mary's Academic Speaks at Sport and Christianity Congress

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Physical and Sport Education Senior Lecturer at St Mary’s University, Twickenham Dr Natalie Campbell spoke at the inaugural Global Congress on Sports and Christianity in August. Dr Campbell was invited to speak at the congress by Senior Lecturer in Sport, Culture and Religion at host university York St John. She participated in a three hour round table discuss Sport, Christianity, Health and Well-Being – Wellness, providing an agnostic voice to complex consideration of faith, elite sport and wellness. Her presentation was entitled Exploring the possibility of commitment to God and commitment to elite sport: Case studies from Christianity, Sikhism and Islam, and discussed the choices and challenges that athletes face when competing at the highest level but still being truthful to their faith. Using real-life examples from her work as a consultant practitioner for the English Institute of Sport (EIS), Dr Campbell provided an interactive discussion through which delegates were asked to situate themselves as coaches, athletes and team-mates, making high performance sport decisions based around the role of religion. Speaking of the conference Dr Campbell said, “The conference was diverse, welcoming, reflective and provocative. Whilst the speakers were predominantly from a sporting background, the majority of the delegates were not and so I was very surprised by the level of interest in my presentation. It was an fantastic experience, as it has furthered my understanding of how to provide even better support to athletes of faith within elite sport”

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