*And those who identify as girls.
In Canada, only 39% of children and youth achieve the recommended 60 minutes a day of moderate to vigorous physical activity. Unfortunately, girls experience even lower rates of activity than boys and emerging research regarding the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on girls’ rates of activity shows that even fewer intend on taking part in sport and recreation.
One of the ways to address the gender disparity in activity is to offer girls-only experiences. Research shows that girls often feel more comfortable being active without the presence of boys, when they don’t feel pressure to perform a certain way.
Offering girls-only physical activity programs, particularly for those in junior and senior high school, has the potential to contribute to increased rates of participation and provide experiences that may result in sustained activity as girls age.
Benefits Of A Girls-Only Running Program:
- Helps create a supportive and fun environment where girls feel safe trying new things
- Provides opportunities for increased confidence and comfort in active abilities, which encourages increased interest in being active and a boost in general self-confidence
- Provides non-competitive fun
- Focuses on fun, personal achievement and the non-competitive nature of running, which encourages physical activity into adulthood
- Promotes positive body image
- Helps girls appreciate how their bodies can function, rather than how they appear
- Provides an opportunity to address issues, such as self-esteem and positive body image, that are specific to girls. Girls feel less pressure to perform or look a certain way
The beauty of Kids Run Club is its flexibility and simplicity when it comes to implementation and the girls-only version is no different. Simply providing the opportunity for girls to be active in a welcoming environment, especially for those with lower fitness levels and/or lower confidence in being active, can enhance the experience significantly.
Interested in launching a Girls Run Club to your school or community? Get registered and then download our free guide to getting started today: