2017 CCC Women’s Committee Athlete Survey

    October 11, 2017

    The Women’s Committee conducted our fourth annual online survey of female athletes. The survey was online in May of this year. Our intention is to conduct this survey every spring, to keep a finger on the pulse of the issues affecting female athletes in Canada. It is our hope that we will be able to track the effectiveness of CCC programming. We also hope to use the survey results to suggest areas where CCC should focus its attention and resources. A more detailed summary follows this overview.

    The general trends in the responses were remarkably similar to the first two surveys. However, the largest group of respondents is now between 16 and 20 years of age, which may indicate a positive trend in athlete retention efforts, given that the focus on these efforts has been on this group.

    Three large issues are apparent in the survey results, similarly to the previous surveys:
    1. Female athletes are frustrated with the current development model in Canada. There is a strong demand for more support to attend university while still training towards the elite level.
    2. There is a perception among female athletes that elite opportunities are not equitably available to them.
    3. Many athletes are dissatisfied with their current team environment and seek more depth of female teammates and, to a lesser extent, improved coach/athlete relationships.

    The following key suggestions continue to guide the way forward:
    1. Promote female-specific development opportunities.
    2. Implement female-specific criteria and de-politicize selection processes to make sure equitable opportunities are available to compete and train at the highest level.
    3. Promote alternative streams geared towards high performance, including university options, either within or in addition to the training centre model.
    Read the full summary