I went to a school which was obsessed with sport. However I wasn’t terribly keen on the idea at the time. In fact Tim McLeish and I once spent a whole term’s worth of PE lessons hiding in the music department so the PE teacher wouldn’t know we existed.
It wasn’t till I was 14 that I found out that I didn’t hate sport. I just hated team sport. I’m not one of life’s natural team players. However I love running, swimming, cycling, squash, martial arts and loads more individual sports. At this point I found it hard to believe that no-one had told me about how much fun sport could be. Of course they had. It’s just that they weren’t very good at saying it.
Over the years since I’ve seen many people have that “A-ha!” moment, where they realise what all these sporty people have been talking about for all these years.
It’s this difference between how much fun sport can be, and how it’s sold to people which drove me to get involved in sports marketing, and show people just how much fun fitness, sport and activity can be.
After working in marketing for a couple of years I got a job with Sport England as campaigns manager. It quickly became clear to me that there are a lot of people who work in sport and have a marketing role, but don’t have a marketing background. I did my best to help everyone while working at Sport England, but I could see that there was a need for more help than I could give at the time, so in March 2008 I set up Make Sport Fun.
We now help councils and charities and other organisations to run sport and activity marketing campaigns. And through this we get thousands of people more active.