The HerHealth Summit took place last weekend

The event welcomed over 80 people to learn about Women’s Health in Football

On Saturday 16th March, Surrey FA welcomed those involved in the women and girls’ game to the inaugural HerHealth Summit at The University of Surrey in Guildford. The day, designed to provide learning opportunities around women’s health, saw over 80 attendees develop their understanding on a range of specialised subjects. 

The day kicked off with an exclusive Q&A session with FA National Development Manager Kate Kenyon, former professional player Kirsty Barton, and ex-Netherlands Head Coach Mark Parsons. Hosted by Emma Barnes, Head of Football Development at Surrey FA, they discussed the challenges women face in football. This engaging session delved into topics such as how creating an inclusive environment in football, that strives to allow women and girls to thrive and take ownership of the game, can help normalise taboos in wider society. Whilst Kirsty and Mark shared their experiences from the professional game, on how you can create a safe space and provide a support system for injured players. 

Attendees then broke out into a series of interactive workshops led by industry professionals on a range of topics from ACL Injury prevention to menstruation. We welcomed guest speakers to talk on nine different specific subjects. These engaging sessions touched on how hormonal changes can affect muscle mass, nutritional changes and planning ahead of matchdays, menstruation limitations and myths. While also exploring the physical differences between female and male players, landing mechanics and why ACL injuries are so prominent in the female game, providing practical considerations to reduce the risk of injury.

The day provided attendees, which included coaches, volunteers, players and parents, with the chance to gain further insight and learn techniques to take into their club environment. Whilst providing a safe space for open conversations, going some way to break down barriers around complex and intimidating topics. 

Helen Ogle, Surrey FA Football Development Officer, and joint lead for HerHealth, was in attendance and had the following to say:

“It was incredible to see so many people, both female and male, learn about different aspects of women’s health and how this impacts those involved in football, whilst breaking down stigma and barriers. It is hugely important that we normalise the conversations around these topics, so we can ensure women and girls feel supported and empowered to be their best in the game, in whatever capacity that may be.” 

If you are interested in attending a similar event in the future, or have any questions, please contact our Football Development Officers, Emma Eaton at Emma.Eaton@SurreyFA.com or Helen Ogle at Helen.Ogle@SurreyFA.com