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For Parents

The Movement
What is It’s My Move?
It’s well-known that teenage girls face a range of barriers to participation in sport and active recreation in New Zealand. National research highlights a strong decline in physical activity for this demographic. Participation by young women drops by 29% from age 15 and the average number of hours they spend informally participating in activity is significantly lower than for young men.

We know that physical activity is incredibly important to both physical and mental health so how do we help our nation’s young women find their feet and feel confident moving their way? 

As they get older, young women cut back on a variety of activities, not just physical activity. Obtaining NCEA qualifications places greater demands on time and contributes to increased mental and emotional strain. Girls aged 15 to 17 years are also often thinking about part-time jobs as well. It’s no wonder that participation in organised sport and recreation activities becomes difficult. In fact by age 17, walking, running and fitness classes are the top three activities for this age and stage, all things they can take control of and do in their own time. 

It also won’t surprise you that fun and friendship are two of the main motivators for young women to continue participating in physical activity. However girls tell us participation for fun is not universally endorsed by adults in their lives. They feel the pressure to participate seriously and compete to achieve outcomes. So how can you as a parent or caregiver support your daughter to make her own life choices, and move her way? Here’s how: 

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