From speaking to members of our diverse communities across Wales, here at Race Equality First we recognise the importance of women only sports provision. Simon Lu heads up our BAME Sports Cymru Project. If you’d like for information about activities, we are involved in please email Simon simon.lu@raceequalityfirst.org.uk

“For many Muslim women religious beliefs and values give meaning to the ways in which they structure and approach their life. Islam is a fundamental aspect of their identity and their approach to sport is often determined by religious, cultural and ethnic factors.

In general, Islam promotes good health and fitness and encourages both men and women to engage in physical activity to maintain healthy lifestyles. However, there are aspects of the religion which affect how sports can be practised, for example; women following their faith cannot engage in mixed gender sports and the environment and dress code also requires consideration.

Among ethnic minority communities, participation is well below the national average. Only 12.5% of Asian women do enough exercise each week to benefit their health compared to 18.8% of White women (3 x 30 minutes.) This clearly demonstrates that there is a need for specific interventions to be developed to ensure that Muslim women specifically have the opportunity to participate in sport and physical activity, and also to gain from the associated health benefits that being active brings.”