Fiona Roberts helps us all think about our role as a fitness professional and the need to consider a more trauma-informed approach.
We hear from Fiona around what trauma is and how it affects people long term potentially creating barriers to accessing physical activity.
We discuss why we believe it is essential for instructors to become trauma-informed. Fiona also provides some suggestions of practical things we can do as instructors to become more trauma-informed and gives some great recommendations for further study.
Please be mindful we discuss the subject of trauma so you may wish to pause or stop at any time.
Here are some of the references and links Fiona mentions in the webcast:
- Dr Daniel Siegel – The Hand Model of the Brain.
- Winning et al  Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and 20-Year Physical Activity Trends Among Women.
- “Safety always begins with the body. If a person does not feel safe in [their] body, [they do] not feel safe anywhere”Judith Herman (2015).
- PTSD and Physical Activity Fitpro digital magazine article by Dr Paul Batman.
- 31% of young women aged 18-24 report having experienced sexual abuse in childhood [NSPCC, 2011].
- 1 in 4 women experience domestic violence at some point in their lifetime [Refuge, 2022].
- Around 1 in 3 adults in England report having experienced at least one traumatic event. [Mental Health Foundation 2016].
- Exercise Harrassment Research Gym Harassment: 56.37% women harassed while working out | RunRepeat , This Girl Can With You launches | Sport England.
- Here are the book recommendations we mentioned: Lifting Heavy Things by Laura Khoudari, The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk and What Happened to You?: Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing by Dr Bruce Perry and Oprah Winfrey.
A little bit about Fiona…
Fiona Roberts is an experienced Personal Trainer with a background in youth and community charity work. In 2020, she founded theMovement Charity, which exists to break down barriers to exercise for women who have experienced domestic violence, sexual exploitation, homelessness and different disadvantages. As part of her work of theMovement, Fiona has designed and delivers training for fitness professionals in a trauma-informed approach to exercise provision.