This International Women’s Day JudoScotland Chief Executive, Judith shares her experience on fitting sport into a busy life:

I am just one of many thousands of working mums who ironically often feel like we’re on the never ending treadmill.

After packing nursery & school bags, dropping children off at childcare and rushing about uploading homework and squeezing in a bit of life admin before work, my thoughts vary from feeling like Superwoman when I arrive at work through to other days when I feel a complete failure at everything (usually when my voice has been raised a little higher than I’d like to admit).

I love my job, in fact I thrive on being in a challenging environment and I just want to influence more people to experience the enjoyment and satisfaction of being involved and developing themself within sport. Sport is so powerful; I’ve gained a heap of life skills and friends through playing a variety of sports throughout my childhood and adulthood.

So as I juggle what feels like a million balls at times, I ask myself why I often now find myself placing sport at the bottom of the priority list. It’s too easy to prioritise an email or two that are awaiting responses, or the cleaning that couldn’t possibly be held off for another day. Perhaps I put too high an expectation on myself……I know I do, and I am just one of thousands of others in the same boat, doing the same. Women in our society still carry the majority of caring responsibilities. This isn’t just in relation to children, but also in relation to caring for parents, neighbours and friends. This enormous responsibility comes at the risk of neglecting care for oneself.

The sport I am involved most with is curling and the late shift game from 9-11pm can sometimes be a real dread to get out the door for, especially on a dark, rainy winter’s night. But when I step on the ice, I almost instantly feel like ‘me’ and focus entirely on the game in hand, switching off to other tasks and problems. By the time it’s finished, I often feel ready to take on the world again.

As a wise person once told me, if you want to look after others to the best of your ability, you must first look after yourself. Being active / involved in sport isn’t selfish, it’s critical for our wellbeing, both mentally and physically. The power of sport cannot be underestimated.

So on this International Women’s Day, I urge you all to make a commitment to be active yourself and to pay particular care to the women around you and offer them support to ensure they get that critical time they need to prioritise activity.