Crazy coaches. Pushy parents. And games are supposed to be fun, right?
By the age of 14, girls drop out of sports twice as often as boys. According to the Women's Sports Foundationfactors such as social stigma, lack of access, safety and transportation issues, costs and lack of positive role modelscan all contribute to the reasons why girls drop out of sports in their adolescent years. If these factors can be addressed, I believe that more girls will remain involved in sport and physical activity throughout their lives.
Thought Leadership. In the past decade, there have been frequent reports about the decline in sports participation. While the SFIA study details what participants are playing, we thought it important to understand why the growth is occurring, so in June Fuse surveyed 2, US teens to find out.
Organized, well-structured youth sports and on-going physical activities can provide many benefits for children and adolescents. At University of Missouri Health Care, our adolescent medicine team encourages all children to participate in sports or other regular physical activity. Physical exercise is good for the mind, body and spirit.
When Isabella started playing lacrosse in the first grade, she would wake up before sunrise and count the minutes until she could hop the chain-link fence that separated her house from the field where her team practiced. Her deftness with a lacrosse stick made her an early standout, and she soon gave up basketball and soccer to focus on the sport. By the time Isabella was a high-school sophomore, she had already been recruited by an elite, Division I college and was signing autographs in her lacrosse-obsessed hometown.
Sports can foster physical and mental growth in children, and seeing your child succeed in sports is a great feeling. However, due to the increasingly competitive nature of high school sports, some parents enroll kids in multiple teams or use private trainers so their kids can play one sport year-round. Young athletes should take at least one season off from their main sport every year and be sure to rest at least one day every week.
Corey and Angie, twin brother and sister, enjoy playing all kinds of outdoor games and sports with their friends. They especially love playing pickup games of basketball and touch football. On particularly nice days, Corey and Angie have been known to kick around the soccer ball, toss around the baseball, or go on long runs.
The sports girls chose the least were wrestling, lacrosse, golf and football. Overall, 61 percent of girls participated in sports, compared with 75 percent of boys. And 29 percent of girls participated in two or more sports, compared to 47 percent of boys.
Every year, millions of teenagers in the United States participate in team sports. Gallup research shows that more than 50 percent of teenagers are on a middle or high school sports team. But, what about the remaining 50 percent? Certainly, plenty of those teenagers are happily involved in other extracurricular activities.