Embracing the Power of Sport.

A personal journey

Helen Brewis, Head of Wellbeing at the University talks about her experience of sport and her lifelong commitment.

Sport has always been more than just a pastime for me – it’s woven into the very fabric of my identity. From the exhilaration of playing squash with my dad to the excitement of team sports with friends, it has shaped me in profound ways. Reflecting on my journey, I realise how pivotal it has been in maintaining my physical and mental wellbeing.

Growing up, I was fortunate to have parents who encouraged my involvement in sports from an early age. This foundation instilled in me a lifelong appreciation for staying active. Despite the common trend of girls dropping out of sports during their teenage years, I found myself drawn even more to various activities. Whether it was netball, hockey, or rounders, being with friends and the sense of accomplishment kept me engaged.

As the years passed, my relationship with sport evolved. While I may not move as swiftly as I once did, the passion remains consistent. Adaptation has been key – transitioning from squash to tennis, from running to jogging – while still finding joy in the occasional netball game. Walking has become a cherished activity, allowing me to connect with my surroundings and prioritise my health amidst life’s demands.


Parenthood brought new dimensions to my commitment to staying active. Beyond personal wellbeing, I strive to set an example for my children, offering them the same opportunities that shaped my youth. Watching my youngest embrace sports like tennis and lacrosse fills me with hope, knowing that being active can be a fundamental part of her identity as she navigates adolescence and beyond.

Navigating through injuries, fatigue, and the challenges of perimenopause hasn’t always been easy, but the rewards of staying active are immeasurable. Commuting by bike integrates exercise into my daily routine and aligns with my commitment to sustainability.

Sport isn’t just about physical exertion – it’s a source of resilience, connection, and personal growth. It’s a journey that transcends the boundaries of age and circumstance, enriching lives in ways that extend far beyond the field or court. As I continue to embrace the power of sport, I’m reminded that its influence stretches far beyond the individual – it has the power to shape futures and inspire generations to come.