18 May Former Olympic gymnast Beth Tweddle joins the Board of Switch the Play
Triple World Champion and Olympic bronze medallist Beth Tweddle has become the newest member of the Board of Switch the Play. The announcement will be made at an event in Manchester today (May 18th 2017). Since retiring from gymnastics in 2013 Beth has been involved in a number of activities including a position on the FIG Committee, running her own business, Total Gymnastics, launching her own series of ‘train with Beth’ camps and working with both BBC and Sky Sports as a commentator. She has now expanded that remit to include a new role with Switch the Play and is looking forward to working with all areas of sport, business and enterprise to find and deliver solutions that smooth athlete transition.
By sharing her own powerful story Beth says she hopes to raise awareness of the issues that face all sportsmen and women at the end of their careers:
“Coming out of sport is tough for any player or athlete. Many suffer not only the loss of their career and income, but also their support network and personal identity. More needs to be done to support people through this difficult time at all levels of sport and that’s where Switch the Play comes in. I have now realised that my gymnastics career taught me so much more than winning medals and those life skills are now helping me in my everyday life. I want to share that experience through my work with Switch the Play and help athletes at every level through a smooth transition. Our aim is to be seen as a support system; a means of bringing the whole sector together to help maximize the potential of everyone through and beyond sport.”
Beth is the latest high profile name to get behind Switch the Play, joining former England International rugby player Leon Lloyd on the Board of Directors.
Leon says he welcomes Beth’s appointment and hopes it will help encourage all athletes to think about the steps they are taking to prepare for transitions:
“We are delighted that an athlete as high profile and internationally respected as Beth is now on the team. When a sporting career ends, whether at 16 or 35, through choice or forced, the dreams can too and we don’t think that’s right. That’s why we are working with athletes, governing bodies and employers to find and deliver the means of creating a brighter future. Both Beth and I understand what it feels when a career ends, and we know what is needed to help others discover that new horizon. We hope the services we offer through Switch the Play will provide helpful solutions through a safe and reassuring network of understanding individuals. We are really proud of the robust system of practical training and guidance we are continuing to develop.”
Today’s event will also be used to encourage athletes and players to sign up to Switched On, a membership network being run by Switch the Play in partnership with Wakelet for those wanting to prepare for life after sport. It gives members access to expert advice, a network of peers from across all sports and tailored support in creating an online profile which will help open up new opportunities.