Brought to you by Lidl.
Being a parent requires a careful blend of love, understanding, support and guidance.
Sometimes however, it can be difficult to know exactly where you should be encouraging your child to venture.
Happily, when it comes to one thing we can all agree; making sure they grow up to be confident, happy, self-assured young adults is the key objective.
With that in mind, the findings of a major new research project by Lidl make for revelatory reading for anyone raising a tween or teen.
It turns out that there’s much more to be gained from sports team membership than the joy of winning and the (albeit important) life lesson of losing.
Playing sports puts girls on the path to success
The research commissioned by Lidl into women in sport, the first of its kind ever in Ireland, revealed clear differences in coping mechanisms between women who play sport and those that don’t.
As well as keeping growing bodies fit and healthy, being part of a sports team bolsters body confidence, mental well-being and the ability to cope with pressure.
Girls that are playing sports are more likely to feel daily happiness and are less likely to feel lonely and bored daily. They are also more likely to feel supported and inspired and rarely feel depressed or overwhelmed.
The perks are clear to see, yet sadly, most of our young women will never enjoy the benefits.
Girls give up sport too early
The research shows that most women give up sport earlier than men – at the start of secondary school as opposed to college. For close to half of girls, the fact that their friends weren’t playing was a reason for stopping.
Furthermore, a huge 76 percent of women agree that girls are not as encouraged as their male counterparts when it comes to sport. It’s clear there needs to be a sea change and it starts with mum – the person most girls describe as their key motivator and supporter.
Encouraging girls to do sport will help them achieve their potential in life, handle peer pressure and make lifelong friends in the process.
The benefits last long after the final school final too; adult women who play sport report lower incidences of pressure to look a certain way.
Why it matters…
Girls who take part in sport prosper; 70 percent of women who played sports in their formative years agree that it helped them achieve their dreams.
In a world where girls are bombarded with images of whatever the media deems ‘perfection’ on a given day, sport is a powerful weapon against the body shaming, Instagram-perfect celebrity beauty ideal.
Make sure your daughter is armed.
FOLLOW THE STORY:
By the age of 13, one in two young women drop out of sport. They are three times more likely to drop out than boys.
Lidl want more Irish women to stay in sport. That’s why they have invested €2.5m to date in women’s sport. Continue reading here.
Join the Conversation: #SeriousSupport