Across grades 3rd-12th in the U.S., there are 4 million less girls participating in sports compared with boys (Womens Sports Foundation, 2011). Additionally, by the time girls are in high school, 1 in 4 will never have participated in organized or team sports (Sabo and Veliz, 2008). Even for the most active girls, there are still only 26% that participate in physical activity six to seven days per week. Compared to boys (40%), that number is drastically low (Sabo and Veliz, 2008). Studies have shown that when girls participate in sports, their lives are positively influenced both on and off the field. Not only does participation in sports instill crucial life skills such as teamwork and good sportsmanship, but also decreases negative health risks such as breast cancer and obesity. Participation in sports also increases academic success and the likelihood of high school graduation.
When we break this down into a sport-specific environment, these numbers are even lower. As of 2017, there were just over 28,700 females registered as rugby players with USA Rugby (25% of the entire USA Rugby membership). Of this number, only 1,055 play flag rugby under the age of 13; over 3,000 less than their male counterparts. The opportunities offered consist of co-ed non-contact programs and co-ed contact programs. Girls-only programs are few and far between, causing girls to drop out of programs or not join all together.
At Girls Rugby we strive to provide a safe, fun and learning-focused environment designed to engage and support young girls as they go through crucial points of their development.