Pros & Cons of Girls Playing sports with Boys
A lot of parents face this issue with their daughters, many girls want to play basketball with the boys for any number of reasons and there just isn’t a single easy answer to the question.
Some of the questions that I’m asked or hear a lot are; should boys and girls play sports together, should girls be allowed to play on boys teams, and should girls play basketball with boys.
In most cases the recommended solution is to let your daughter try it out and if she likes it then you should let her continue, but some parents want to have a little more input than that.
The reason I ask this question is because I know there are a lot of parents out there whose daughter loves basketball and wants to play at the next level. I will eventually face this situation as my daughter is starting to like basketball!
One question that you may want to ask as a parent is, does playing with boys give her an advantage over other superstar girls?
So, now that your daughter has asked about playing basketball with the boys it is time to determine what you need to do.
The most important thing to ask yourself is, do you think she is ready for this? and if you simply don’t think she is, then it probably isn’t a good idea.
Odds are if your daughter is asking to play basketball with the boys because she is already feeling very confident in her basketball abilities.
This is already a very good sign and will likely help her in the future, obviously you don’t want to crush her spirit by saying no but it is important to consider the facts when playing with the boys.
Fortunately in nearly all cases playing with the boys can actually be quite beneficial to a girl that loves basketball, so now is the time to sit down and ask your daughter, how seriously does she want to play basketball.
Benefits of Girls playing Basketball with Boys
There are quite a few reasons why you should let your daughter play with the boys if she wants to. The biggest benefit of playing with the boys is that your daughter will be exposed to a completely different style of basketball that can really help her improve and become a better basketball player.
At many ages, boys will be more aggressive, faster, and more advanced than girls so your daughter could learn very valuable skills that she wouldn’t necessarily pick up on playing entirely against the girls. Ask yourself, can my daughter really improve by playing with the boys? and you’ll quickly find the answer, odds are you’ll realize that she really can get better.
Disadvantages of Girls playing Basketball with Boys
Of course you probably want to know about any potential drawbacks as well, and unfortunately there are at least a few to consider. First of all, boys can sometimes be a little more physical when playing basketball, for some girls this is not really an issue and can help toughen them up, but for some girls it could be overwhelming.
Many girls might also be nervous about being surrounded by all boys rather than the girls they are friends with, but if your daughter is asking to play with the boys, odds are she is prepared for this.
Here is an awesome story about Ann Meyers Drysdale who is considered one of the best basketball players ever! Drysdale didn’t shy away from playing with the boys, that is why she tried to play in NBA for the Indiana Pacers. She has an amazing story and demonstrates why women can do anything that they put their mind to.
This is a must read book for parents and girls who love basketball. – “You Let Some Girl Beat You?”.
The skills and talent she could pick up are far beyond what she would develop otherwise, but if she isn’t ready for it you won’t be helping her at all. In the end it really comes down to you and the child making the decision, everyone’s child is different and you need to do your best to decide if she’s ready to play with the boys.
It is a good idea to talk with the boys as well as your daughter to determine if she is really ready, but if becoming a better basketball player is a priority this is absolutely one of the best ways to do it.
This is different but is similar in so many ways, I developed my basketball skills pretty quickly by being a boy playing with men! Playing with older players as a young kid, helped me to become quicker, more agile, a better decision maker and an all-around better basketball player.
They didn’t take it easy on me and ultimately that made me tougher. Some girl’s coaches will go as far as scrimmaging against boys and their are many success stories of why this has helped their team. If my little girl decides that she wants to play basketball and really be good at it, I’m an advocate of letting her play with boys her age so that she can get better.