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From day one, the award-winning This Girl Can campaign has been shaking up the way women get active and changing the rules of the game.

Our story so far

We entered the world of exercise as a force to be reckoned with - and remain so to this day. This is our story so far…

January-July 2015
A woman runs up a hill in the countryside
Phase one
In 2015, we launched our ground-breaking This Girl Can campaign to celebrate a realistic vision of women and exercise in England and to tackle the gender activity gap. We wanted to change how women think and feel about exercise - and encourage women to be active in ways that work for them, regardless of age, background or ability.

The first step was to talk about the fear of judgement and help women realise they were not alone. To achieve this, we launched a nationwide campaign featuring real women – on TV, in cinemas, across social media, in print and on billboards – with the aim of motivating as many women as possible to share their experiences and empower them with the confidence to exercise on their own terms.

A dedicated This Girl Can website and app was launched to provide helpful advice and signpost women who want to be more active - with women everywhere encouraged to talk about and share their stories using #ThisGirlCan
February-July 2017
A lineout in a women's rugby match
Phase two - Phenomenal Women
The second stage of our campaign, Phenomenal Women, built directly on what we had learned during our first, trailblazing years to focus on the long-term – encouraging women who drop in and out of activity to develop regular habits, build confidence and increase their resilience.

We also extended the campaign to include women aged 40-60 for the first time, as research showed us that fear of judgement resonated just as strongly with this group as it did with younger women.

The campaign was adapted to include older women and slower-paced activities - and to address concerns shared by women aged 40-60, such as not being as good as they used to be or being too old to start something new.
October 2018-June 2019
A woman uses a leg press machine in a gym
Phase three - Fit Got Real
In 2018 we launched our Fit Got Real campaign to tackle the inequalities in activity levels found among women from different backgrounds - and to help more women meet the Chief Medical Officer’s recommendation of at least 150 minutes of physical activity per week.

The campaign addressed the perception that ‘real women like me’ are rarely shown exercising in the media or on TV, as well as the practical challenges women face, such as not having enough time, feeling too tired, or the high costs of gym memberships.

Fit Got Real showed real women of all shapes, sizes, ages and ethnicities doing exercise their own way, no matter how unconventional, including - running around a park pushing their child in a pram, hula hooping at home, jumping into the sea, trampolining with friends and teaching themselves how to swim using YouTube.
October 2019
Disney partnership
Our This Girl Can campaign worked together with Disney to create five dance-a-long videos designed to inspire mums to get active with their kids.

The films feature real families from our This Girl Can community as well as popular Disney songs from the movies.

Released during half term, the Disney Dance-Alongs were shown on the This Girl Can YouTube and Disney channels and promoted across social media, providing a fun and engaging way for families to get active together at any time.
Check out the videos
A Breeze leader poses on a poster saying 'helmet hair, don't care'
British Cycling partnership
This Girl Can teamed up with British Cycling to create a social media campaign designed to engage less active and less confident women to take part in friendly group cycle rides, led by women.
January 2020
A woman gets ready to go swimming in a changing room
Phase four - Me Again
This Girl Can returned to TV screens – five years after the campaign first launched – with Me Again to inspire women everywhere to get active in the ways that work for them.

Bringing out the often unspoken, shared experiences we all have, our ground-breaking ad introduced five new women from the This Girl Can community to show the unfiltered reality of women’s lives.

Showing everyday women getting active – no filter, no airbrushing - the pioneering, taboo-busting ad went all out to feature breastfeeding, menopause and periods with the aim of reaching more women and girls in a relatable, unapologetic way.
Watch the film
July 2020
A poster for the This Girl Can and Sure partnership
Sure partnership
In July 2020, This Girl Can collaborated with Sure to launch the Your World, Your Workout ad campaign, which ran on Sky, Channel 4 and ITV.

Edited to reflect the Covid-19 situation at the time, the ads went out with a clear message – being active now is more important than ever.
September 2020
A woman stretches in her bedroom before doing an online exercise class at home
Phase four - Me Again, Again
In March 2020 England went into lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic and everything changed. This Girl Can responded quickly and, in September 2020, re-released Me Again with new footage showing how women had found ways to be active despite the restrictions.

Disproportionately affected by the pandemic financially, and with a greater burden of care and increased levels of worry and anxiety, women found returning to activity even more of a challenge.

As part of the campaign, we introduced ‘Sistagram’ which found women in the ad collaborating with female influencers on Instagram to encourage conversations around exercising during lockdown – with our social community becoming a place for women to share their experiences of being active during the pandemic and offer support to one another.
Watch the film
September 2021
Two girls perform side lunges in an exercise class as part of a Studio You video
Studio You launch
Our Studio You platform launched in September 2021 as part of our mission to get more teenage girls active through enjoyable PE lessons.

The free video-on-demand programme enables teachers to break the traditional PE mould and deliver fun and engaging activities found to be popular with teenage girls - such as yoga, boxing, Pilates and dance - inspiring even the most uninterested girls to take part.

With many girls losing interest in sports and exercise as they become teenagers, and 55% of girls aged 13-16 failing to meet the government's daily activity guidelines, Studio You was created to inspire positive attitudes toward physical activity that reach well into adulthood.
Find out more
November 2021
Montage of pages from the As Told By The 51% report
As told by the 51% guide
This Girl Can joined forces with ukactive in November 2021 to produce new guidance to help gyms and leisure facilities become more welcoming spaces for women and girls after research found that half of those who attended worried about being judged.

The downloadable guide – How to improve your services for women and girls: as told by the 51% – includes practical ideas and recommendations to help gyms and leisure facilities appeal more to women, as well as help close the gender activity gap. 

The guide has been welcomed by leading fitness operators who look to improve membership numbers and retention by taking on board some of the key recommendations.
See the guide
December 2021
A mum exercises with her baby strapped to her front
Active Mums Start With You
Our Active Mums Start With You campaign was launched in December 2021 to help GPs, midwives and health visitors talk openly with expectant and new mothers about the benefits of activity, and to offer guidance through a variety of resources. 

Launched in response to a survey – which found that 74% of pregnant women or women with children under one year feel nervous or anxious when it comes to physical activity – Active Mums Start With You was developed to make it easier for healthcare professionals to offer advice on how to exercise safely, and as a way to encourage new mums to get more active. 
January 2022
A group of women stretch in an exercise class
This Girl Can Classes launch
This Girl Can teamed up with EMD UK to roll out a new range of group exercise classes offering lower intensity, fun and supportive sessions for women who may not have felt comfortable attending group exercise classes otherwise.

Inviting women to “Come and do your worst”, This Girl Can Classes offered group exercise in a non-judgemental environment where women, regardless of fitness levels or prior experience, could feel comfortable and confident. Where a wiggle the wrong way, or a jiggle in the joggers brings joy, not judgement. Where a step out of line is a celebration.
May 2022
Three women stretch in a park, leaning on their buggies
We teamed up with online activity tracker Strava to launch an inspiring new campaign aimed at getting women active after taking a break – wherever they live and whatever that looks like.

We created a This Girl Can club – our first on Strava – inviting women to ‘Make Your Comeback’, celebrate the joy of moving again and share their experiences within a safe and supportive space. It might be a countryside hike, a jog with a friend, or a walk in the park – there’s only one right way to get active, and that’s what is right for you.
Learn more about the partnership
February 2023
A group of women try a fencing lesson using plastic swords
Phase five - This Girl Can With You
We began a new chapter of our ground-breaking campaign, This Girl Can With You.

Launched to address the enjoyment gap, which finds that men enjoy being active more than women, the focus is on four main action areas – Social, Suitable, Self-Affirming, and Safe – helping more women to feel that becoming active is a rewarding, pleasurable experience.
May 2023
A woman holds a barbell behind her head in a gym
How to make your spaces safer for women: A call to action from the 51%
The second in the ‘51% guide’ series, May 2023 marked the release of the follow-on research and guidance from ukactive and This Girl Can, exploring women's experiences of sexual harassment and intimidation in the gym and leisure sector.

This guide provides practical steps for facilities to help create an environment where women and girls feel safer and more confident being active.
See the resource
June 2023
Teenage girls enjoying Studio You class at school
Studio You x Bodyform
Studio You teamed up with leading period care brand Bodyform to launch a period hub on the Studio You platform, providing tips and information for teachers to support their students while on their periods.

The period hub for teachers was also complemented by a student-facing resource hub on the Bodyform website. It features a guide debunking period myths and providing advice on being active throughout your menstrual cycle.

The partnership was supported by a co-branded television ad during the Women’s Euros called ‘no blood should hold us back’.
July 2023
This Girl Can activewear range spread on a table
Tesco x TGC partnership
We launched a partnership with Tesco in-house brand F&F, which saw an exclusive This Girl Can activewear range for women and girls developed and sold in stores, offering a stylish, comfortable and affordable range to be active in.
July 2023
A pitcher juggles throws a softball in her hand
Make Your Summer Move
We ran a new PR campaign, based on insight that nearly half of women were worried about showing their body while being active in the summer.

Using case studies, tips and insight, we encouraged women to get moving in a way that works for them.
October 2023
This Girl Can's Let's Lift the Curfew campaign runners in central London
Let’s Lift the Curfew
Coinciding with the clocks going back and days getting darker earlier, we hosted a parliamentary roundtable discussion on women’s safety while being active outdoors, bringing together parliamentarians, advocates, academics, and experts from the sport and physical activity sector to address solutions and actions.

Alongside this, we were joined by running clubs across London for a 5K evening Let’s Lift the Curfew run, accompanied by our digital screen displaying quotes from women expressing how they feel about getting active outdoors in daylight compared to darker days and nights.