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#LGBTInnovators - Welsh Hockey Player Beth Fisher

10th February 2016

#LGBTInnovators - Welsh Hockey Player Beth Fisher

Beth Fisher is a professional hockey player from Wales, currently playing for Swansea City. From a young age Beth wished to represent Wales in sport and despite trying her hand at a handful of sports, she couldn’t settle on the sport that was for her.

It wasn’t until she received a visit from Paralympic Gold Medallist, Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson and her PE Teachers selection for the Commonwealth Games in 1998 that she realised her love for Hockey.

Beth admits that she has never been the most talented of players but her sheer determination and will to succeed and reach the highest level in Wales has seen her move through the junior teams to make her senior debut in 2002.

Beth has faced challenge of injury throughout her sports career, and is known for her strong-will and determination to succeed in the face of adversity.

In 2015 Beth became the first LGBT Sport Cymru Ambassador. A huge step forward for Beth, Hockey Wales, and the LGBT Sport Cymru network in terms of raising the profile of LGBT equality in sport in Wales. Beth is also a Stonewall Role Model.

Upon first becoming LGBT Ambassador Beth said:

“I am an International hockey player. I am also gay. They are totally separate things but I happen to be both. Be confident and proud of who you are. Because, just like the opposition do on a hockey pitch, if you’re not confident then they will pick out that weakness and use it against you. Think of me as your team mate and let’s win this game together.”

Speaking to Glamour magazine about why her role as LGBT Sport Ambassador is important to her Beth said:

“For me the fact that there are no openly gay Premier League footballers is a travesty when sport has such an impact on our cultural environment. One of the problems is that sport carries a lot of stereotypes. For example, if you’re a rugby player you have to be macho and muscly. Growing up, I didn’t know anyone who was gay so every time I heard the word ‘lesbian’ it was used negatively. Now, I always say, ‘I’m a woman, I’m Welsh, I’m a sportswoman and I’m gay’; I want to increase the visibility of LGBT role models and use sport as a vehicle for that message. I don’t want anyone to feel like I did, and if I help one little girl or boy be more confident then I’ve done my job.”

Leap Sports is spotlighting #LGBTInnovators in sport throughout LGBT History Month this February. We will celebrate a different LGBTI innovator in sport each day. LGBTI sports innovators include athletes, competitors, coaches, managers, community members, founders or co-ordinators of sports groups, someone passionate about their sport.

Got an LGBTI innovator in sport that you would like to shine a light on?

Use your imagination and join the conversation using the hashtag #LGBTInnovators on Twitter @Leapsports and Facebook facebook.com/leapsports

Find out more about LGBT History Month at www.lgbthistory.org.uk

Written on 10th February 2016.