ERIC Number: ED243878
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Mar-31
Reference Count: 0
Historical Perspectives of Female Participation in Youth Sport.
In the 1980s females in America are permitted and even encouraged to participate in youth sports. This social phenomenon, however, is of recent vintage since most youth sports programs did not initially welcome girls' participation. Three major factors in girls not having been provided equal opportunities in sport are physiological differences in the sexes, societal norms and attitudes, and organizational rules and support. Although competition for girls was largely restricted until the 1960s, some sport participation did occur. Beginning in the 1960s attitudes began changing, since the existing golf, tennis, and field hockey tournaments had not harmed the participants physically or emotionally. While cultural attitudes have prevented many girls from eagerly pursuing sport, these too are changing. No longer are sport outcomes such as character development, social interaction skills, and enhanced self-worth thought to be appropriate only for boys. Organizational rules and support have determined what youth sport opportunities have existed for females, and since societal attitudes have traditionally encouraged sports for males, they invariably were the beneficiaries of the best programs. Most national youth sport organizations today no longer have restrictions about girls participating. The three reasons justifying the limitations placed on female participation in youth sport are no longer considered valid. (JMK)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (Anaheim, CA, March 29-April 2, 1984).