“Don’t be such a girl about things.”
“You throw like a girl!”
“She kicks just like a girl!”
“Girls shouldn’t be allowed to play ____.”
How many times have you heard the words “like a girl” before? Often times this phrase is used in such unflattering ways, especially in the world of sports. Despite the rise in female athletes, particularly in this year’s Olympics in Rio, there is still such a negative stigma attached to being a woman participating in a male dominated field.
Before girls hit puberty, doing something “like a girl” doesn’t seem like such a bad thing. However, once they hit puberty, doing those same things “like a girl” suddenly have a new meaning. Young girls begin to stop and question themselves, wondering if doing something “like a girl” is suddenly a bad thing. During puberty, girls are trying to figure themselves out. They are trying to figure out who they are, what it is they like to do and what makes them stand out. It’s a critical time where self-confidence suddenly plummets, especially in the world of sports. That softball star who used to have no fear of throwing the ball suddenly begins to wonder, “Do I throw like a girl?”
Seven out of 10 girls who stopped playing sports during puberty said it was because they didn’t feel like they ‘belonged’ and 67% said they felt as though society doesn’t encourage girls to play sports. What society doesn’t understand is that sports encourage confidence in girls and teaches them about teamwork, among other things.
For the last 30 years, Always has made it their mission to empower young girls around the world and educate them about their periods and teach them about confidence. Their #LikeAGirl campaign is a powerful one. Always teaches girls that doing something “like a girl” is a powerful thing. A good thing. Something they shouldn’t be ashamed of. With their campaign videos, Always is bringing a clear message to young girls: Just because you are a girl doesn’t mean you can’t play sports.
Take a look at these articles on keeping girls interested in sports after puberty as well as the original #LikeAGirl video:
The original #LikeAGirl campaign video