Coaches play a central role
Coaches play a central role in getting and keeping youth involved in sports. Similarly, for both boys and girls, current players reported liking their coach more than sport dropouts do, and dropouts were more likely to have liked their coach only “a little” or “not at all.” Parent evaluations of the coach also reflected these differences, with parents of current players more likely to report that their child’s coach is excellent, and parents of sport dropouts more likely to rate the coach less positively.
Coaches of current players were also more likely to have an equal focus on both winning and having fun (not just having fun). Additionally, current players were more likely than dropouts to have a coach that sets team and individual goals. Together, these qualities may help impart/reinforce to players that their playing matters, that their efforts are paying off, and that the coach cares about their growth as athletes (i.e., takes it seriously). Keeping Girls in The Game: Factors That Influence Sport Participation