About Me

My name is Abby Barras, and I’m a full-time PhD student at the University of Brighton, based in the School of Applied Social Science. I started in October 2017, and am now in the final stages of my research, which is funded by the Brighton Doctoral College. My PhD research focuses on the participatory experiences of transgender and/or non-binary people in everyday sport and physical exercise in the UK.

My research is motivated by a lack of existing qualitative research in this area, which asks trans and/or non-binary people personally about their participatory experiences. If potential barriers are to be addressed and improved access to sport for all is to be achieved, then placing trans voices at the centre of my research is crucial.

I have a Masters in Gender Studies (with distinction) from the University of Sussex, and my research interests include gender, sport, feminism, health inequalities and the body. I am also a sea swimmer and fresh-air enthusiast. The colder the better.

This blog started as a place for me to think and to write about my student journey and experiences, and to perhaps offer advice to others. It’s helped me to develop my writing style and to build my confidence, as well as a being a place to reflect on my PhD journey. These blogs have become invaluable as source to check on how I’m progressing and feeling – and handy when I need to remember what I have done over the year.

You can find out how I got here and more by reading my first blog, ‘Summer is Over, and I’m starting a PhD’.