Is your girl just not into sport? Here’s the lowdown on why she might be disengaged from sport, and some tips on how to get her moving.
When your girl tells you she "doesn't like sport", sometimes there's a specific reason if you scratch beneath the surface.
Here are the most common reasons why some girls don't vibe with sport.
Bullying is a huge concern for girls (and, of course, kids in general). If someone on a team is bullying them, or they feel self-conscious about their appearance (more on that below), they may actively avoid all sport. Kids need the adults around them to help them feel good about their bodies, and to assist them as they learn how to stay resilient against bullying.
A bad experience can put teen girls off sports for good. If they've suffered an injury or eating disorder, clashed with a coach, or been frightened, they might need some gentle coaxing to return to sport again.
Aside from the fact that teens and kids are still growing, they're also still developing motor skills. This can lead to teens feeling clumsy or a little uncoordinated. If they're embarrassed by their lack of coordination or their clumsiness, they may avoid physical activity altogether.
Worryingly, there's a trend towards girls dropping out of sport because of body image woes. It's no secret that girls often feel serious pressure to conform to unrealistic beauty standards, and if she's feeling self-conscious, she'll shy away from sport.
Adjusting to their rapidly changing bodies is another hurdle girls have to clear that can seem insurmountable at times. That's why we make our shorts and leggings sit at mid waist, to help her feel less exposed and we add a little extra length to our shorts for that same reason. Our crops are also designed with her development (and self consciousness) in mind, featuring double-layered fabric to smooth out her silhouette and also to provide a little support.
Girls often associate exercise with the typical team sports they play at school. If they don't like these sports, they may assume they won't like any form of exercise. Exposing her to a variety of movement-based activities can lead to the activity that ultimately lights her up and provides the heart-pumping outlet she needs to stay healthy physically and mentally.
Sometimes, girls might feel that, unless they are amazing at a particular sport, there's no point in trying. This can happen when a she has perfectionistic tendencies, or if pressure is put on them to be great at everything. If she feels too much pressure to succeed, sport ceases to be fun and she's likely to actively avoid it. For best results, put fun first.
To get the mental and physical benefits that can come from regular exercise, girls should be incorporating one hour of exercise into their daily routine.
It's always a good idea to show your kids just how many sports are open to them, because chances are, something will spark excitement. However, if they're not participating in sport, here are other ways to get her moving.
Instead of viewing movement as a way to achieve a flat stomach (who even cares!) or fit into certain size (booooring), with the right encouragement and influences, girls can view exercise as a way to test their limits and discover what they're capable of. Working with her to find activities that spark joy, and gently uncovering and working through the barriers that are standing in the way of an active lifestyle will set her up for optimal health and well being.
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