The Sports That Can Boost Girls’ Self-Esteem and Create Future Opportunities
Sports are today considered essential for childhood and adolescent development. Playing sports not only helps in physical toning and conditioning, but both team and individual sports lead to significant intellectual development that can influence future success.
Parents can help their teen girls to prepare for college life and beyond, with the top sports that increase self-esteem and have an influence on college enrollment and success in four-year courses.
Sports Have been Proven to Benefit Teens
In a study performed by the Women’s Sports Foundation, it was found that teens who play sports get better academic grades, their relationships are healthier, and they enjoy overall higher levels of health than teens who don’t participate.
Teens that engage in sport are likely to eat healthier, they are more likely to take daily exercise of their own initiative, they sleep better, are more successful in school, and are 13% more likely to graduate from a four-year college.
It is worrying that girls don’t engage in sports as much as boys, because findings of the study indicate that benefits of sports are stronger for girls. Girls that participate in two or more sports can have better prospects, which is why every parent should encourage participation and help teens to find a sport that they enjoy.
What Are the Sports That Will Most Benefit Teen Girls?
Not every sport is suited to every teen, and there can be some exceptions even when looking at generalized lists.
For building self-esteem in girls, cheerleading, soccer, basketball, and softball or baseball are considered the best options. Each of these sports are highly team orientated and can provide several interpersonal benefits that help girls to develop. Each is also physically involving, so they lead to improved strength and overall health.
When looking at the data that influences graduation in a four-year college course, Weightlifting, soccer, cheerleading, track and field sports (running, javelin, discus, pole-vault etc.) were all found to be the most influential.
Wrestling was found to be the least beneficial and the least preferred by girls, however, there are always exceptions and it’s important for parents to let their teens engage in the sports that interest them to discover the ones that they are more likely to stick with.