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Girl Sports

Girl Sports

Did you know that The Women's Sports Foundation has discovered that sports offer some extra benefits for girls in addition to having fun and getting fit (kidshealth.org)? 

A few of these benefits include: 

  • Girls who play sports do better in school. People may think that athletics takes up all of a girl's study time. But research shows that girls who play sports do better in school. Exercise improves learning, memory, and concentration. 
  • Girls who play sports learn teamwork and goal-setting skills (things that go hand-in-hand with being a Girl Scout). Being a team player can make it easier to work with others and solve problems, whether on the field or in the classroom. 
  • Playing sports builds self-confidence. Girls involved in athletics feel better about themselves, both physically and socially. It helps to build confidence when you see your skills improving and your goals becoming reality. 
  • Exercise can cut the pressure. Pressure is a big part of life. Playing sports can help girls deal with it. Plus, when a girl is on a team, she has friends who support her on and off the field. 

With this in mind why not have your Girl Scout try out that sport she's been wanting to learn more about. Or maybe she wants to hone in on practicing her fencing skills. Check out our Activity Calendar for more Girl Sports opportunities! 

Girl Sports Center Patch

Girl Scouts can earn the Sports Center Patch when they've attended their first sport. 

Sports Center Patch
Archery

Did you know that there are 4,000,000 women involved in archery? (The Archery Trade Association). The top five health benefits of archery include: 

  1. Improving your focus. Remaining focused during a shot is important for every archer. 
  2. Improves your hand-eye coordination. Archery trains your hands to aim based on the feedback from your eyes. 
  3. Improves your upper strength. 
  4. Improves your social skills. 
  5. Improves your confidence. 

Did you know that we even have a female archer, named Sandy McCain, who has been a 3 time champion for the NFAA, Sectional Champion twice, CBH-SAA Field Champion 13 times, State Target Champion twice, State Indoor Champion twice and State Broadhead Champion 10 times! Wow! But that not's it. She was the first person in 1991 to capture all 4 state championship titles in the same year! She has also accomplished many more outstanding records. And guess what...she is the archery instructor we use for our Girl Sports: Archery workshop in Kern County. How amazing is that? 

So is your Girl Scout ready to try a sport that’s both challenging and exciting? 

archery
Bowling

Did you know that the Professional Women's Bowling Association (PWBA) was formed in 1960 but ceased operations in 2003? The PWBA Tour was re-launched in 2015 by the United States Bowling Congress (USBC) and Bowling Proprietors' Association of America (BPAA) with a three-year funding commitment. The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) began conducting PWBA Regional (women-only) events and PWBA members are now allowed to bowl all PBA events. The PWBA organizes and oversees a series of annual tournaments for the top competitive women ten-pin bowlers. The series is often referred to as the "women's tour" of bowling. 

Is your Girl Scout ready to strike up some fun and lace up her bowling shoes for a great time with your Girl Scout sisters? 

bowling
Cheer

Did you know that cheerleading dates to the 1860s, in Great Britain, and entered the US in the 1880s? 

According to Epic Sports Cheer/Dnace, "Cheerleaders in the early years sported ankle-length skirts and varsity sweaters. Later on cheer squads began to include gymnastics, dance and other showy stunts into routines, and in the 1930s cheers were aided by the use of paper pom-poms (the first vinyl pom-poms weren't manufactured until 1965). By the1940s women were mainly leading the cheers, and routines took on a voice their own.

In 1948 Lawrence Herkimer founded the National Cheerleaders Association (NCA) which began to hold cheer workshops. The first one was held that year, with more than 50 attendees. That number grew to 350 by the following year, and by the 1950s most high schools had a squad.

By the 1960s just about every high school and college in the country had cheerleaders. Professional cheerleading was introduced around this time under the National Football League and its leader was the Dallas Cowboys debuting during the 1972-73 season. They were first widely viewed at the 1976 Super Bowl X game, changing the face of cheerleading as a profession."

 

 

cheer
CrossFit

CrossFit was founded in 2001 by Greg Glassman and since then, its popularity just keeps growing. In 2018, there were more than 15,000 CrossFit gyms in 162 countries and more than 14 million Crossfitters. From that total, 60% of Crossfitters were women (Barbell Beauties). 

There are many benefits to doing crossfit! It includes boosting metabolism, improved muscular strength, helps promote a healthy cholesterol, improves agility and coordination. 

Is your Girl Scout ready to try crossfit? 

crossfit
Fencing

Did you know that women’s fencing didn't enter the Olympic games with individual foil until 1924? Which was even before women’s gymnastics! Keep in mind that fencing is one of the original ten sports, there were no women at all in those first games. Team foil for women came in 1960. Epee wasn’t open to women until 1996 and sabre wasn’t open to women until 2004.

But it wasn't until thirty-two years ago in 1988, when women’s sabre was added to the Fencing National Championship. Before that, women weren’t allowed to compete in sabre on the national level. 

Is your Girl Scout ready to try out her fencing skills? 

fencing
Football

When we think of football we tend to think of an all male sport. But did you know that Patricia Palinkas is on record as being the first female professional football player, having played for the Orlando Panthers of the Atlantic Coast Football League in 1970?  

Below is a timeline of talented women who've played/coached football:

  • On October 18, 1997, Liz Heaston became the first woman to play and score in a college football game, kicking two extra points. 
  • In 2001, Ashley Martin became the second female athlete to score in a college football game, this time in the National Collegiate Athletic Association. 
  • In 2003, Katie Hinda became the first female athlete to score in a Division I-A bowl game; she later became the second professional player when she signed with the Fort Wayne FireHawks. 
  • In 2007, Abby Vestal was the kicker for the Kansas Koyotes in the American Professional Football League,  an indoor pro football league. 
  • In 2014, Julie Harshbarger, a placekicker for numerous Chicago-based Continental Indoor Football League teams,  became the first female player to win a most valuable player award.
  • In 2014, Jennifer Welter became the first female skill position player at the male professional level by playing as a running back in the Texas Revolution.  
  • In 2015, Brittanee Jacobs is the first female football coach at the collegiate level. She helped coach safeties at Central Methodist University. 
  • In 2015, Jen Welter was hired as a  training camp/preseason intern, coaching inside linebackers for the Arizona Cardinals, making her the first woman to hold a coaching poistion of any kind in the NFL. 
  • In 2016-2017, Kathryn Smith became the first woman to hold a full-time coaching position in the NFL. She worked as a Speical Teams Quality Control Coach for the Buffalo Bills. 
  • In 2018, Katie Sowers became the second woman to hold a full-time coaching position. She works as as an Offensive Assistant Coach for the San Francisco 49ners. 
  • In 2018, Kelsey Martinez became the Oakland Raider's first feamle assistant coach in the franchise's history. She is currently the only woman working in the NFL as a strength and conditiong coach. 

Is your Girl Scout a future college/NFL player or coach? 

football
Gymnastics

Gymnastics has existed for more than 2,000 years, but its development as a competitive sport began just little more than 100 years ago. 

Did you know that gymnastics wasn't introduced to the United States until around the Civil War by Dr. Dudley Allen Sargent, who taught gymnastics in several U.S. universities and who is credited with inventing more than 30 pieces of apparatus. 

It wasn't until 1936 when Olympic gymnastic competition for women with an all-around competition. Then in 1952 competition for the separate events was added. 

gymnastics
Hiking

Did you know that Jennifer Davis hiked the Appalachian Trail AND set the record for the fastest overall (male or female) completion time on this trail? It took her 57 days and 8 hours and was the first woman to set that mark. Jennifer has completed the Pacific Crest Trail, summited Kilimanjaro, and set a Women's Vermont's Long Trail record. Today Jennifer is still hiking along with running Blue Ridge Hiking - a company she founded in 2008 and still able to be a Mom to her kids and a wife. Jennifer's mission is to get people outdoors.

Lace up your hiking boots and join Girl Scouts for a fun hike. 

hiking
Hockey

"The National Women’s Hockey League was founded in 2015 with a mission of providing strong female role models for the community while fueling the continued growth of the sport and brand of women’s hockey. The NWHL was built and is led by women, including the Commissioner, more than 100 players and countless event, operations and broadcast staff each season. It attracts many of the best players in the world and allows them to pursue their careers professionally," (NWHL). 

These women aren't just hockey players. A majority of the women are pursuing careers or furthering their education. You will find teachers, medical professionals, engineers, financial analysts, coaches and trainers, marketing and communications executives and entrepreneurs on this team. 

Is your Girl Scout ready to hit the ice? 

 

hockey
Ice Skating

Did you know that figure skating is the oldest women’s Winter Olympics sport? Together with six traditional summer sports including tennis, sailing, archery and croquet, it was one of the first sports with a category for women competitors–and the only women’s winter Olympic sport until 1936. What shocks people is that figure skating was originally seen as a masculine pastime. (Smithsonian Magazine) 

According to the Smithsonian Magazine, The International Skating Union (ISU), which oversees international skating competition, was formed in 1892 and hosted the first World Figure Skating Championships in 1896 just four men competed in the event. Then in 1902, a woman, British figure skater Madge Syers, entered the competition thanks to a loophole in the rules; there was no rule disallowing women. For that competition, Syers placed second, behind Swedish skater Ulrich Salchow. Salchow offered Syers his gold medal, saying he thought she should have won. 

ice skating
Lacrosse

Did you know that the first modern women's lacrosse game was played in 1890 at the St Leonards School in Scotland, where women's lacrosse had been introduced by Louisa Lumsden? She brought the game to Scotland after watching a men's lacrosse game. In 1914 a lacrosse club was created at Sweet Briar College by Cara Gascoigne. The first women's lacrosse team in the United States was created at the Bryn Mawr School in Baltimore in 1926 (Synapse Sports). 

Is your Girl Scout ready to step on the field? 

lacrosse
Martial Arts

Did you know that Edith Margaret Garrud was the Western world's first professional female martial arts instructor in 1899? She used her knowledge of jiu-jitsu and joined forces with the suffragette movement (check out our Suffrage Patch). Women protestors were the targets of brute-force arrests by police. She trained a force of women known as the Bodyguard to help protect the protest leaders from law enforcement, (Century World Leader in Martial Arts Since 1976)). 

The women of the Bodyguard had a number of hand-to-hand combat bouts with police, and trained in secret to avoid detection. After WWII put the suffragette movement on hold, Garrud continued to work as a self-defense instructor, teaching women, (Century World Leader in Martial Arts Since 1976). 

Is your Girl Scout ready to take her stance? 

 

martial arts
Rock Climbing - Indoor

FannyBullockWorkmanVotesWomen_Wiki

 

Did you know that Annie Peck, a founding member of the American Alpine Club, climbed Coropuna (21,079 feet) in Peru in 1911, and waved a banner atop the summit reading “Women’s Vote.”? Meanwhile, Fanny Bullock Workman, while surveying glaciers on an expedition in the Karakoram, was photographed with a “Votes for Women” sign (picture above). Workman trekked to the Himalayas to climb Pinnacle Peak [22,735 feet] in 1906, establishing a new female altitude record. Want to know more about the Suffrage Patch click here! (Megan Walsh, Climbing). It was these women and countless others who paved the way for rock climbing for women. 

Is your Girl Scout ready to rock? 

rock climbing
Roller Skating

The French inventor M. Petitbled patented a three-wheeled inline skate model in Paris in 1819. But it wasn’t until 1863 that James Plimpton “revolutionized the roller skate” by designing quad skates, according to the National Museum of Roller Skating. Many people preferred to skate in rinks. By the 1880's manufacturers were mass producing skates, and rink-building followed after (Ruth Tery, The History Behind the Roller Skating Trend). 

Is your Girl Scout ready to lace up her skates? 

 

roller skating
Running

Did you know that the first record of women running is set all the way back to Ancient Greece in 776 BC? Young women took part in the Herean Games, a series of footraces to honour the Greek goddess Hera. In fact it wasn’t until 1922 that the first Women’s World Games were held in Paris. More than 15,000 attended. In 1926 Londoner Violet Piercy becomes the first woman to run a marathon recognized by the International Association of Athletics Federations, finishing in 3:40:22 (Runner’s World). 

Is your Girl Scout ready for a race? 

run
Soccer

Did you know that the British Ladies’ Football Club (BLFC) held their first match at Alexandra Park in Crouch End, London, in 1895? By the 1890s, association football (soccer) had become a largely working-class sport, (James F. Lee). 

Despite being more popular than some men's football events (one match saw a 53,000 strong crowd)  women's football in England was halted in 1921 when The Footballl Association outlawed the playing of the game on Association members' pitches, on the grounds stating that "the game of football is quite unsuitable for females and ought not to be encouraged, (James F. Lee). 

It wasn't until 1971 when this ban was lifted, fifty years later. However, it wasn't until 2008 that an official apologize was issued. Six years prior in 2002, Lily Parr of Dick Kerr's Ladies FC, was the first woman to be inducted into the National Football Museum Hall of Fame. She was later honoured with a statue in front of the museum.

Is your Girl Scout ready to hit the field? 

soccer
Swim

Did you know that Annette Kellerman was not only a famous swimmer, but also an actress, writer, and business owner. She helped popularize synchronized swimming, and was one of the first women to wear a one-piece swimsuit.

During this period, women were expected to wear a full dress and pantaloons, but Annette advocated for a close-fitting one piece with stockings. She was the first woman ever to race against men, beating over a dozen of them. As one of the first women to attempt swimming the English Channel in 1905, she tried 3 times, but never completed the trip. She acted in several silent films and would perform on stage. In 1974 she was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame (Motivation). 

swim
Tennis

Did you know the earliest forms of tennis were played on monastery courtyards in France, with players using their hands instead of racquets? Tennis as we know it today began in the mid-19th century in Britain, and was referred to at the time as "lawn tennis." It was also popular with women from the very beginning.  The first Ladies' Championship at the tournament was held in 1884. Maud Watson was the first victor and earned a prize of 20 guineas (Emma Cueto). 

Is your Girl Scout ready to play "lawn tennis?" 

tennis
Trampoline

Did you know that trampoline's were developed in 1934, trampolines were originally used to train astronauts or were used as a training tool for other sports? They soon became popular in their own right and a sport was born. 

Trampolining made its first appearance at the 2000 Games in Sydney, with men’s and women’s competitions. The number of events (two) has remained unchanged since then (Olympic.org). 

Is your Girl Scout ready to try out her Olympic skills on a trampoline? 

trampoline
Yoga

Did you know that according to an article by Ramesh Bjonnes, titled "Women and Yoga: Dispelling a Myth," women have been allowed to practice yoga for thousands of years, at least in the areas of India where Tantric Yoga was prevalent. If you consider yoga to be more than simply postures, and instead include chanting, ecstatic dance and meditation—all part of the yoga tradition—women have been practicing for a very long time.

Is your Girl Scout ready to meditate? 

yoga