According the new research by StreetGames, the national sports charity, friendships play a big role in encouraging girls to take part in sport. by Emma Barlow
They asked 1,000 women aged 18-25 questions and the research revealed that 63% of young women say they won't play sport or exercise without a friend by their side.
Also, after leaving school 44% of young women rarely played any sport and over three quarters asked said the one reason for playing sport would be to catch up with their friends. Over two thirds (67%) say they feel more comfortable exercising with their friends compared to exercising with people they don't know. 39% of women said they would feel awkward and self-conscious without their friends, while 30% feel like everyone is looking at them. This lack of appetite for sport stems from school PE lessons, with 9 in 10 young women citing dislikes such as strict teachers, anti-social classes and always 'being picked last.'
National sports charity StreetGames has launched Us Girl Guides, which explore the ways to get more young girls to be physically active, through understanding the role of friendship groups. The guides were developed following in-depth analysis of past Us Girls sessions, undertaken by Dr Nicola Eccles from Leeds Trinity University, which examined how friendship groups influence participation in sport and exercise. The Us Girls brand is designed to increase and sustain young women's participation in sport and physical activity within some of the nation's most disadvantaged communities.