gender & sports

Girls take timeout when sports shift gear

Girls drop out of team sports when the competition increases, shows a new study. At age 11, only 20 percent of girls are getting the recommended amount of physical activity for that age group. Among 15-year-olds, that percentage drops to 10.

In 2010, several municipalities in southern Sweden noticed a lack of interest among girls in team sports and being members of sports clubs. Wanting to reverse the trend, they ordered an investigation into the matter.

More than 200 girls were interviewed and the final report recommends less focus on winning and competition, and called for more education about exercise and health.

"It doesn't mean that girls don't like competing, but that they don't like it when it's the prime focus," researcher Åsa Bringsén at Kristianstad University College tells the news agency TT.

"Our research shows that instead of trying to influence their club to change its focus, the girls quit," she says.


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