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30th Jan 2022

Footballer Louise Quinn on the progress women’s sport has been making

Ellen Fitzpatrick

This is only the beginning.

Women in sport have seen huge progression over the last number of years, finally they’re starting to get the same recognition and equality as men.

While there is still a long way to go when it comes to full equality and parity between male and female sports stars, we can see from the interest to the uptake, times are changing and changing for the better.

Irish footballer Louise Quinn says the progress for women in sport over the years is “music to my ears”.

“We want to make every avenue, not just women’s football, but women’s sports grow,” she tells Her, “and to show what’s there. If you actually give us the tools and you give us the same backing that men’s teams get, it will be good. There is always huge potential.”

“In the last six months, it’s been massive and it has finally come to the forefront of what we wanted with equal pay and parity to the men. For me, that’s obviously huge.”

Louise is currently working with the SPAR FAI Primary School 5s Programme, helping young children find a passion for sport regardless of their gender or ability.

The participation for the 2022 programme has seen almost half of those joining being girls at 45%, the highest it’s ever been for this scheme.

Educating girls on sport and sending the message that it can be for everyone is something close to Louise’s heart.

“It’s something that I am so passionate about, it creates team environments. Five a side, for me personally, it’s actually some of the best fun that you can actually have.

“What this programme is doing is creating teaching programmes about football. It gives such a different dynamic, maybe people don’t feel as confident on the pitch to start with, whereas this gives them another side to kind of express their love for football as well.

“It’s a great way to get healthy, it’s such a tough workout but there’s no doubt that you’re laughing during it as you’re playing. That’s the most important thing for kids.”

And when it comes to high female participation, Louise says that women’s sport is becoming a lot more visible, especially in the eyes of young people.

“You do a lot of these things and there’s generally only a handful of girls that want to participate. Whereas now women’s sport, and especially women’s football, is becoming so visible.

“That’s one of the most important things that you can do. Make these things visible to young girls and just show them football is for whoever wants to play it. We want to be role models for kids and grown ups alike.”