Bowls Scotland chair Sue Beatt

My Sporting Life

Sue Beatt on becoming the first female Chair of Bowls Scotland.

What was your first involvement in sport?

I played netball and hockey at school. I hated hockey and asked instead to join the boys in learning the javelin - I then went on to win the javelin competition for my house on the school Sports Day.  

Where did your journey into the world of bowls begin?

I moved to Scotland in 1999 after meeting my now husband. He is born and bred Glaswegian. He had played bowls for many years but I resisted as my impression of it was that it was an old person’s game and as I am fairly fashion-conscious I was horrified at the ugly grey skirts that I would need to wear! My sister in law and I were often at the bowling club for social events so we finally decided we would join - particularly as I would now be able to wear trousers!   

How much has your life revolved around sport and vice versa?

The club I now belong to has a good social side so we’re there quite a lot. I was District Secretary for the West of Scotland Women’s Bowling Association for three years and am currently Ladies Treasurer for the club as well as being Chair of Bowls Scotland. I also enjoy playing bowls, whether our ‘bounce’ games on a Thursday evening, club games and competitions and association games as well. I have also qualified as a bowls coach. I enjoy keeping fit and can regularly be found in the gym or swimming pool. 

As the first female Chair of Bowls Scotland how did you feel when you were elected?

Amazed, excited, nervous, humbled and proud that the ordinary members have looked beyond the old traditions. Traditions are important but I think many members now see the need to modernise as well, in order to see the sport grow and thrive. I am delighted that so many looked beyond the male/female issue and instead looked at the candidates’ skill sets and what they could bring to the table.  

As a passionate bowler yourself, why would you encourage more people to take up bowls as a sport?

How many other sports are there where you can play as a complete novice or experienced player and still enjoy the game together? It’s probably the most accessible sport there is. Whatever your age and level (or lack) of fitness you can still play. My father was still playing well into his 80s. All abilities and ages can play and disability is no barrier. Most clubs have spare shoes and bowls if people want to come along and try the game, so there is no expensive equipment to buy to start playing. Playing bowls provides flexibility and low-impact exercise. It can also promote mental agility as it can be a very strategic game. It can be played at a social fun level and there are pathways to more competitive levels for those that want to progress.  

What would your advice be to anyone who may be considering a career in sport?

Go for it! You’ll be involved with people who have passion, enthusiasm and positivity. What better way to spend your days!  

Find out more

Hear from some of the other female role models we've been profiling this week on Twitter

If you're Interested in lawn bowls check out the Bowls Scotland website.

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