#PassOnYourPassion campaign passes through West Yorkshire to encourage more women into coaching.

A current Guinness World Record holder passed through West Yorkshire, as part of an awareness campaign to encourage more women into coaching.

Tracey Coldwell, a cycling coach at Holmfirth Cycling Club received a baton from Amy Hughes, a runner from Oswestry, who set an Official Guinness World Record for running 521 miles on a treadmill in seven days.

It was part of the #PassOnYourPassion campaign, which involves all 13 County Sports Partnerships (CSPs) in the North of England, and aims to raise the profile of women coaches, as well as inspiring more female participants into coaching.

Currently only 30% of the coaching workforce are women and the percentage of women coaches receiving a qualification each year is 17%.

The campaign, piloted in Greater Manchester last year, sees women who are passionate about coaching receive an athletics relay baton. The coaches are asked to pass on their baton to a female participant from their session, with the handover symbolising a welcome to the world of coaching. The baton’s new recipient is then encouraged to register for future coaching opportunities in their area.

This year #PassOnYourPassion, will be going on a 14 week tour, with each county taking a turn hosting the campaign for a week. 40 batons will be sent to nominated coaches to pass on to keen athletes and share their stories on social media.

The tour began in West Yorkshire from 8-14 May, and will move on to South Yorkshire from 15-21 May. It will then pass into East Yorkshire and North Yorkshire, before touring the North East and North West before finishing in Greater Manchester in August.

Coldwell, who has been coaching at Holmfirth Cycling Club for three years received the baton as part of the West Yorkshire leg of the campaign at Holme Moss on 8 May.  Commenting on her coaching she said: “I started coaching while I was in the club as I wanted to help people. I gave it a go to see if I enjoyed it and found I had a knack for it.  I got my qualifications and decided I loved it. It’s great seeing kids developing, learning and enjoying cycling.”

Nigel, Harrison, CEO of Yorkshire Sport Foundation, the County Sports Partnership for South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire said: “Fewer than one in three coaches are women. We want to celebrate the great work that is going on across the region and inspire more women to get into coaching.”

You can get involved by using the hashtag #PassOnYourPassion when posting on Facebook and Twitter. Please tag @reachcoaches and @YorkshireSport.

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