PUMA & COPA90′s ‘Do Both’ Docu-Film Features Iceland Footballer Sara Björk Gunnarsdóttir

Puma Copa90 Sara Björk Gunnarsdóttir 1

PUMA and COPA90’s ‘Do Both’ film featuring Iceland international and Olympique Lyonnais midfielder and Puma ambassador Sara Bjork Gunnarsdóttir highlights her journey preparing for motherhood in November 2021 and returning to play for her club and country in March and April 2022 and premiered on 16 May in Lyon (France).

 

The German sportswear brand and football content creation and distribution outfit co-hosted the premiere with Gunnarsdóttir, her family and friends and several stars of the football world all present.

 

Shot over nine months, the 12-minute docu-film follows her journey from the birth of her son Ragnar (on 16 of November 2021) to her return to elite football just four months later: offering unparalleled access into her life, the challenges of balancing pregnancy and motherhood with professional football and detailing her training schedule through this period.

 

The short film seeks to break down the stigma that often surrounds female athletes, pregnancy and motherhood and sees the Iceland star share insights into the physical and mental challenges of preparing for childbirth while maintaining her career as a professional athlete in the French Division 1 Féminine and for the Icelandic national team (for whom she has a record 136 caps). The narrative arc sees her work with specialist coach Mark Jonson as she seeks to return to the top level of the game just five months after giving birth.

 

Directed by COPA90’s Lawrence Tallis, it drives awareness of some of the societal preconceptions placed on women remaining active while pregnant and returning to work after giving birth.

 

Part of the sportswear brand backed ‘COPA90 Stories’ series (a channel dedicated to exploring great footballing stories from around the world) and following its cinematic premiere, the documentary was posted across COPA90 and PUMA’s YouTube channels from 17 May and was promoted through a digital-first promotional campaign backed by PR support led by a trailer titled ‘Captain, Leader, Mother: The Comeback From Pregnancy – Sara’s Story’.

 

 

“I’ll be forever thankful that my journey to motherhood has been captured, to inspire others, to remind myself of the challenges I overcame and to show we can break down barriers and not be limited to other people’s perceptions,” said Sara Bjork Gunnarsdóttir. “We are capable of so much more. I am grateful for the support of my family and friends, and of course my partners PUMA who have all supported me as I prepared to welcome my son and return to playing football. I know not everyone has been able to tread the same path, and I hope the documentary can act as a universal truth that, as women and mothers, you do not have to choose between having a family and your career. You can do both.”

 

“This has been a special project to be a part of from the moment Sara met with us and wanted to give unprecedented access to her personal journey,” added Matthias Baeumer, PUMA General Manager BU Teamsport. “Sara wanted to show that you do not have to choose between your career and starting a family. By sharing her journey, including the mental and physical challenges she has faced along the way, we hope this will inspire and give insight to athletes around the world. In a time when women’s football is going from strength to strength, it is important to bring awareness to such key topics and to show that society’s perceptions do not need to determine your path. The documentary with our partner COPA90 is a beautiful insight into her strength and unique character.”

 

COPA90 CEO Tom Thirlwall added: “The power of Sara’s story is one born out around the world every minute of every day, yet in the sporting world so rarely seen. It’s been a privilege to capture her journey preparing for a new stage in her life as both a professional footballer and mother, and to challenge the preconceptions around what Sara’s life should be having welcomed her son. We know the documentary will inspire others, and hopefully shift the societal pressures and judgement, with such a unique insight into her world and her huge mentality and character.”

 

 

Comment

 

Gunnarsdóttir is a football and Icelandic sports legend: she was the first Icelandic woman to win the UEFA Champions League, a six-time Icelandic Footballer of the Year and a two-time Icelandic Sportsperson of the Year.

 

This project saw her team up with sponsor and sportswear giant and Iceland national team technical kit supplier Puma and self-styled fan-first football media company COPA90 which is positioned at the intersection of fan engagement and reaches more than 70 million fans around the world monthly.

 

 

 

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