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Survey: LA Girls Play More Sports Than Rest of Nation

November 11, 2020 / Athletic Administration
A recent survey suggests that the rate of girls in the Los Angeles area participating in youth sports is growing at a higher rate than the national average.

The results of the “2020 Los Angeles County Youth Sports Participation Survey for Play Equity” from the LA84 Foundation were released earlier this week and also found the participation rate of girls and boys in 17 of 23 sports is higher than the national average, according to a report from MyNewsLA.com.

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Photo: Wesley Sykes / Great American Media Services

Girls participating in youth sports jumped from 73 percent in 2016 to 82 percent in 2020, the survey said. Additionally, the percentage of all young people playing sports has increased slightly from 2016, standing now at 82.7 percent.

“The LA84 Foundation and Play Equity Fund invests in this research because we are committed to finding solutions to the challenges our communities are facing,” Renata Simril, the president and CEO of the LA84 Foundation and the Play Equity Fund, told MyNewsLA.com. “Research clearly shows the positive impact that sports and structured play have in kids’ lives. The data in this report indicates that while kids from more affluent families are able to enjoy the benefits of sports participation, there are barriers for kids who come from lower-income homes. Equal access to sports for kids is a social justice issue.”

The results come from more than 1.2 million young people, ages six through 17, who play sports in Los Angeles County.

In addition to the participation rates, the survey also collected data on equal access to sports for children coming from different financial backgrounds. The survey found that the gap between the children and families who can afford to participate in organized youth sports and those who cannot is widening.

Children from households with annual incomes greater than $150,000 participate in sports at a rate of 93 percent, while, in contrast, 68 percent of kids from households earning less than $35,000 play sports, according to the survey.

“The percentage of active kids from low-income families dropped, while the percentage of parents voicing concerns about the cost of youth sports participation has increased,” foundation officials stated, as reported by MyNewsLA.com.

LA84 officials noted that the COVID-19 pandemic and the related financial issues, when combined, will likely widen the Play Equity gap moving forward.

To read the full story from MyNewsLA.com on the youth sports participation survey from LA84, click here