Scottish Squash is gearing up for the launch of its ground breaking new programme H//T SQUASH, in association with Scottish Women in Sport (SWiS).
The aim of H//T SQUASH is to reach a brand new audience of women and girls across Scotland this year, introducing them to squash through a fun and friendly fitness-based programme.
It will specifically target inactive females who have never picked up a squash racket before who want to get fit in a safe, fun and social environment.
H//T SQUASH comes off the back of our G/RLS DO SQUASH campaign which was rolled out in 2018 and shortlisted as a finalist at The Herald & GenAnalytics Diversity Awards.
The programme will be launched across three regions – west, east and the north – encompassing nine member clubs.
H//T SQUASH ACT/VATORS will run classes in these regions.
We are delighted to announce that Scotland’s number one squash player Lisa Aitken and Scottish Squash Performance Coach Kylie Lindsay will be ACT/VATORS for the east region.
Inverness-based Ailsa Polworth, pictured below, will take charge of the north region with Jenn Saldanha, a level two coach in Glasgow, running the H//T SQUASH west programme.
David Fallon, Head of Development at Scottish Squash said: “We are thrilled to finally announce details of our H//T SQUASH programme.
“A lot of hard work has gone on behind the scenes to get us into a position to start the programme.
“This opportunity has only been made possible thanks to funding from the Scottish Government’s Women and Girls fund and the support of sportscotland.
“We were successful in securing £24,000 through our joint application with partners SWiS which allows us to build a workforce to support more women and girls take up squash.
“Essentially we’re moving G/RLS DO SQUASH to the next level by creating H//T SQUASH – a squash-based fitness class.
“Over the course of six weeks participants will gradually get fitter whilst also learning about the basic movements and skills involved in the game of squash.
“Even if you are currently inactive you can come along, get fitter and learn the basic skills.
“And by the end of the six weeks it’s hoped participants can start their own unique journey in our sport.”
He continued: “We are severely under-represented in terms of girls and women squash participants in Scotland.
“We have looked at reports that say females prefer an easier access into sport through a social environment with women delivering it.
“That’s why we have put a lot of effort into developing this unique fitness-based programme that can break down barriers to participation.”
SWiS CEO Maureen McGonigle added: “It’s fabulous the way Scottish Squash embraced G/RLS DO SQUASH and how it’s now evolving through this satellite programme.
“H//T SQUASH has a great focus on gently introducing females to a sport by getting fit, making friends and having fun.
“In terms of our partnership with Scottish Squash, it works really well.
“We each have our own strengths so coming together and helping develop a programme such as H//T SQUASH is great.
“The enthusiasm of individuals working at Scottish Squash to get women involved in their sport is clearly tangible.”
Commenting on the four ACT/VATORS selected to roll out H//T SQUASH, David Fallon said: “We were looking for women with the right personality, drive and commitment who would offer up a positive experience to participants.
“We were delighted that Jenn came forward, she’s fantastic and has the personality and time to deliver this.
“Having someone of the stature of Lisa is brilliant and she will be supported by Kylie Lindsay, a former New Zealand internationalist, when she’s competing on the PSA tour.
“Ailsa has a great personality and done wonders to champion women and girls activity in Inverness.
“She delivered our most successful G/RLS DO SQUASH day to date.”
For more details on the H//T SQUASH programme contact Scottish Squash Head of Development David Fallon at David.Fallon@scottishsquash.org
H//T SQUASH Clubs
West: activator, Jenn Saldanha
Clubs: Newlands LTC, Giffnock LTC, Whitecraigs LTC, Hamilton Squash Club.
East: activators, Lisa Aitken and Kylie Lindsay.
North: activator, Ailsa Polworth.
Inverness Tennis and Squash Club.
Watch the Reporting Scotland news feature on H//T SQUASH below.