Factors that motivate females over the age of 18 to participate in football in Wales
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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The aim of this study was to explore the reasons which motivate females over the age of 18 to participate in football in Wales. According to The Sports Council for Wales Active People Survey (2010) women aged 16-24 in Wales had a participation rate in sport of just 21.1%, in comparison to 49.9% of men the same age. It is suggested by numerous authors that a high number of girls drop out of sport by the age of 16 (The Sports Council for Wales, 2009; Youth Sport Trust, 2010; Women’s Sport and Fitness Foundation, 2012a; Sport England, 2013). However, the rise in women’s football in Wales seems to be breaking this assumption with a growth of around 4,000 registered players since 2000 (UEFA, 2013b). Despite this statistic, there has been very limited research looking into the motivators for women’s football in Wales. Therefore, it is important to explore the reasons which motivate females to continue their participation in football past the assumed dropout age. Six participants were identified to take part in this study. These participants were women over the age of 18 who play football in Wales. A qualitative framework of semi-structured interviews was used to explore the motivators to participation for this group. The results identified four key themes that motivate women to participate in football. These included: social factors, psychological factors, environmental factors and competitive sports. Key motivators identified by all participants were the influence and social support from friends and family and the relationship they had with their coach. Other motivators such as confidence, self-esteem, the competitive nature of sport and the experience of sport through their educational years seemed to be important factors in a female’s decision to participate in football. A recommendation for future research would be to conduct a similar study in other countries such as England and Scotland in order to compare and analyse themes and motivating factors
DEGREE OF BACHELOR OF SCIENCE (HONOURS) SPORT DEVELOPMENT
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