Review: Equations for a Moving Body

Hannah Nicklin began her performance by sitting at her laptop playing songs on Bandcamp. She opened tabs of various bands including Martha; straight away I thought this is a good start, predicting that good opening music would lead to a great show. Nicklin commented that we were the quietest audience she had seen so far during this opening, and that playing the music was in fact not part of the show; but most of the bands were friends of hers, and if we wanted to hear more of them we could ask at the end. It seemed, however, that this introduction did connect with the show, as it demonstrated Nicklin’s thoughtfulness and immediately showed how much she values her friends, a theme that would continue throughout the performance.


Equations for a Moving Body is the story of a milestone in Nicklin’s life, completing the Iron Man – Outlaw Triathlon; a 2.4m swim – 112m bike – 26.2m run. Nicklin explained how she wasn’t sure if marriage was for her and didn’t know if she wanted to have kids, but she did want to create her own milestone. At the age of 28 she decided to complete the Iron Man in the year she turned 30.


It was interesting to learn about the psychological endurance that Nicklin went through as well as the physical in her completion of the Iron Man. She found that being alone with her thoughts for so many hours was another challenge in itself. To overcome this she played games, such as trying to go through songs that she knew all the words to. I was amused to discover that the only song she knew every single word to was ‘Hands Down’ by Dashboard Confessional, a song that I also definitely played way too many times when I was about 14.


I was touched by Nicklin’s descriptions of her friends and training partners. She spoke about the solidarity of sport and training with other people, how people always look out for one another or check in. Nicklin described encounters with people she met running in the Iron Man, a guy with a rubber face who pulled different facial expressions every time he met a new challenge, and Elliott, (with two t’s) a primary school teacher. The little, yet significant, details about each person she described shows the care that went into writing this piece.


The most poignant moment in the piece was hearing about Nicklin’s friendship with John Lamb. Lamb took Nicklin running in Loughborough, and kept pushing her to go faster until they collapsed back at her house and downed orange squash after their endurance was pushed to the limit. The audience fell into complete silence when she brought up an article describing John Lamb’s death in a snowboarding accident. Nicklin worked out the speed at which he would have fallen and set a timer: 15 seconds. As the seconds ticked down I nearly cried. I was struck by the honesty of Nicklin’s performance. Equations for a Moving Body was heartfelt, funny, sad, and inspiring. The final performance at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe is tomorrow at 11am. I highly recommend booking tickets right now. 



Welsh Athletes Gear Up For The Paralympics

Article, photos & video created by Write On! for #C4PopUp – Ciara Cohen-Ennis, Hannah Hughes, Tamsin Dykstra, Alex Gray & Matthew Young

The excitement of the 2016 Olympic Games radiates from the walls of SportWales HQ in Cardiff. Still reeling from the silver medal triumph that is water-baby Jazz Carling; SportWales has created momentum for its sister organisation, Disability Sport Wales.

Within the next two weeks, Disability Sport Wales will transport its 12 Welsh Superhumans to Rio to compete in the 2016 Paralympic Games. Its humble beginnings rooted in the celebration of WWII veterans, the Paralympic Games are a demonstration of what determination and tenacity can achieve.
With such an emphasis on the Welsh Paralympians travelling to Rio, what benefits does the Paralympics bring to Wales?
Nia Jones, who works in the community programme with Disability Sport Wales told ‘Write On!’ that having ‘brilliant role models pushed the spotlight on disability sport and gets younger people into clubs and participating [in sport]’.  They have certainly been successful in achieving these goals considering that in the 2012 Paralympic Games, Disability Sports Wales supported 24 of the 38 Welsh Paralympians. ‘if Wales had competed as a nation in London 2012 games then in terms of medals per head, Wales would have been the most successful nation.’
Beverly Lewis, Executive of Welsh Triathlon says that ‘we have very strong athletes, probably one of the strongest teams out there’.  Sara Head, Bronze table tennis medalist in the London 2012 Paralympics looks to continue her success in Rio along side teammate Thomas Matthews. Once again the Welsh athletes are set to make their mark at the Paralympic Games.

Sportstec Press Release



Sports solutions provider to take conference experience online for students


Creators of the world’s leading sports performance analysis solutions, Sportstec, have announced they are to partner with the Science and Football Conference taking place at the SoccerDome in London on April 30th.


Through an online learning resource developed by Sportstec, subscribed students and universities from across the globe will have access to the event 24hours after the conference.

The conference, which has become the leading industry event for those working in both professional and elite football, aims to provide a unique blend of presentations, Q and A sessions and practical coaching sessions, across all of the key all aspects of player and coach development.

Sportstec have built their name delivering performance technology solutions across the sporting world and have recently developed a new technology based on the same principles which is helping to improve coaching and learning in the classroom. They work extensively providing their solutions to clubs throughout the premiership including Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City Football Club.

Speaking about their involvement at this year’s conference, Nick Harrison, of Sportstec said: “We’re delighted to be supporting this year’s Science and football conference. We will be using our technology to video all coaching sessions and keynote speakers. Our newly developed online learning resource will enable sports students across the globe to access the event 24hours after the conference.”

The presentations will be delivered by professional practitioners who all have experience of working at the highest levels of professional and youth football and will include subjects such as, Sports Science, Performance Analytics, Injury Prevention and Talent ID.

Nick added: “Subscribers will have access to all of the keynote and practical sessions that take place on the day and unlimited access until the end of May this year, which makes this a great learning tool that can be revisited to enhance the students learning and CPD. We’re inviting students and universities to register for online access to the conference.” (ENDS) 

Find out more about Sportstec by clicking here.

Science & Football Conference 2014.



Missing the Winter Olympics? Five of the best extreme sports societies



Now that the Winter Olympics has come to a close, it may have left some students inspired to try out some extreme sports at their own university. Here are a small number of the extreme sport societies on offer across universities in the UK.

Skiing and Snowboarding

Pretty much every university in the UK will have a popular ski and snowboarding society and Birmingham is a good example. Brumski and Board society has been running for around 30 years and has over 500 members. They hold Christmas and Easter ski trips every year and regularly take part in competitions. Daisy Tudor, a committee member, describes some of the events that Brumski partake in, “every Wednesday we go to sports night. Fancy dress is compulsory, as well as drinking. Games and music are played and everyone is welcome. It usually gets very rowdy but there are no seniors terrorising freshers like some other sports encourage. We also have special events like the Extreme Sport Ball, BUDS and Kings Finals Ball (after competitions that take place in Edinburgh and London). During these there is a strict no cutlery rule and cheesecake always ends up in people’s hair or tux jackets.”


Oxford, York, Aberdeen and Warwick are only some of the universities that offer this rather unusual sport – underwater hockey! Apparently anyone who is able to swim is able to play. It’s played in teams of six and everyone is equipped with a mask, fins, snorkel and a small wooden hockey stick.

Skydiving and BASE Jumping

The University of Lincoln offers both skydiving and BASE jumping. For those of you that don’t know, BASE jumping is where participants jump from fixed objects (buildings, antennas, spans and earth) and use a parachute to break their fall. They go on weekly trips to Skydive Hibaldstow in North Lincolnshire, which is the home to University of York Skydiving Society, and sister drop zone of Skydive Spain. The society hopes to arrange an Easter Skydiving trip to Spain.

Skateboard, Rollerblade and BMX

The Cambridge Urban Sports society brings together skaters and BMXers and meets regularly for social and sporting events. Each term they travel to PlayStation skate park in London and to the NASS urban sport festival in Bath every year.

Warwick University is home to the amusingly named ‘WUSS’ (Warwick University Skate Society) as well as a Longboarding society. Longboards are usually two or three feet longer than a normal skateboard and have a wider wheel base. The society plans to take part in the Great Parade Skate in Leamington. Instead of offering society hoodies or t-shirts, the longboarding society have chosen to let members have personalised socks…


Birmingham University’s Windsurfing society has been running for over 10 years. They are members of the Student Windsurfing Association (SWA) so they go on trips all around the country to meet up with other Windsurfing societies. These include Bude in Cornwall, Liverpool, Bristol, Nottingham and of course BUCS in Southampton. Susanna Mazzocca Gamba, a member of the society, says “windsurfing is a great sport as it’s enjoyable at all levels and windsurfers are all very chilled out. We recently went to a roller disco as a social, which was great fun.”

The Manchester Extreme Sports Society (MESS) organise windsurfing, rock climbling, paintballing, bungee jumping, zorbing and other events for their members. Zorbing is sport in which you are harnessed inside a giant, transparent ball and run down a slope. It’s very popular with lead singer of The Flaming Lips, Wayne Coyne, who loves zorbing around the crowd at their concerts, because crowdsurfing is so last year… MESS has also helped organise a charity climb up Kilimanjaro.