LifeSports PLUS empowers girls by introducing them to sports such as skiing, golf, hiking, fly fishing, and Krav Maga that they can participate in for a lifetime. These sports, that have long been enjoyed by men, even the playing fields for women in the workplace. LifeSports teaches leadership by teaching older girls to serve as mentors to younger girls.
The Idea behind LifeSports PLUS
Life sports versus conventional competitive sports
Competitive sports such as soccer and basketball are wonderful for many girls. LifeSports focuses on sports that are all-inclusive and can be enjoyed throughout one’s life. LifeSports also builds upon the potential lessons learned through lifelong sports such as golf, hiking, fly fishing, and skiing that can be applied to all areas of life including the workplace. This especially true for women who are just making overdue strides in sports and the marketplace. LifeSports PLUS offers young women the opportunity to learn about sports such as fly fishing.
Women and Sports: Positive Learning Using Sports
Sports have long been considered to be positive for children. Until Title IX, however, girls have not enjoyed the same access as boys. Women have come a long way since the early seventies. In addition to the sport, girls study the academic sides of each sport including the history and role of women in each respective sport. For example, women have a long history in the sport of fly fishing (see A Graceful Rise:Women in Fly Fishing, yesterday, Today and Tomorrow).
Learn to Lead by doing
Daniel Coyle, in his book The Little Book of Talent, suggests that “To learn it more deeply, teach it.” LifeSports PLUS is based on the belief that when high school girls are offered the opportunity to mentor younger girls they develop a deeper understanding of what it takes to be respectful and responsible leaders within their community.
There are a number of benefits to teaching older students how to mentor younger students. The obvious benefit is, of course, that the older students learn by doing. In the case of high school girls, teaching younger children requires them to understand the skills, such as teamwork, and encourages that they create an environment where teamwork can take place. Leading second and third graders is difficult for experienced adults-- let alone teenagers. Struggling through a session with third graders who won’t sit still and listen requires a young leader to dig deep and find something that works. Yelling louder or blaming the situation does little to quiet the chaos. Of course, another benefit is that the younger children see the older students modeling leadership instead of bullying. This process can eventually create a circle of good where leadership actually trumps bullying. The goal is to create an environment where leading and helping is cool.