Home > Uncategorized > From playground to podium – the democratisation of winning

From playground to podium – the democratisation of winning

I attended my very first Sports Technology Awards or STA 2015 last Friday and saw at first hand the inevitable inequality of resources amongst the finalists. There were a good number of Goliaths in the shape of Mercedes; Chelsea Football Club; Jaguar; Ticketmaster and O2 on the one hand, and a fine and plucky (and somewhat smaller) crew of Davids. Between them there were some very clever ideas that suggest a new realm of sports enjoyment is just around the corner for fans and participants alike. One such representative in the latter camp of Davids was our very own Marcelyn McGinn and her SportUpside sports progression platform.

Blessed with an indefatigable sunny streak of Canadian, mid-Western optimism as wide as the prairie sky, Marcelyn has not one whit of self-doubt in her slender frame. The crushing odds of Google or Nike entering her space hold no fears for this ex LBS graduate. She is on a mission to start a democratic sports revolution.

Her fight and determination come not from massive resource, either financial or team based. Rather her succour is sourced by a cracking idea and a powerful mother’s sense that surely, surely we can do better when helping our kids enjoy sport more. Her idea is to support this ambition by trying to create a permanently self-iterating network of support around a child’s sports progress. Indeed, her vision for SportUpside is that everyone, not just kids, can benefit from having a coherent ‘sport memory’ of what, where and how performances can be moved forward with insight, calibration and praise from all relevant stakeholders. Her fight is the fight of every parent, school, club and coach for the tool to encourage players to participate; learn; review; reflect and go again in a virtuous feedback loop.

On the day of STA 2015, SportUpside was nominated for two awards. In each case another stepped up to the stage to receive their prize. Disappointed? Pah! The girl from Moosejaw and the biggest of Canadian skies was already off and running to a distant horizon where everyone is a winner. Not everyone can win at the STA. However, the day when everyone can ‘win’ in the unheralded race to progress in their chosen sport is surely moving closer. This is a race that may not be won overnight, but is one that we are supremely proud to running in alongside Ms McGinn. Or more accurately, in her slip-stream.

Now, about my split race times….

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Anonymous
    March 30, 2015 at 5:19 pm

    Very well said!

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