Introduction to GBA Plus

Youth fitness case study

Factor 2: Gender analysis

How do Jean-Philippe and Meera fit into the picture?

Although individuals are not the focus of federal work, having a fuller picture of the issues in different target groups will improve our analysis and assist us in designing a better initiative. Jean-Philippe and Meera will represent the two population groups.

On the previous page, we discovered that due to social structures and gender norms, roles and relations, boys are more likely than girls to participate in sports.

Information gathered in focus groups with girls suggests girls are more likely to participate in non-contact sports, often participating in sports associated with music (aerobic dance, for example).

The findings suggest that differences in participation between girls and boys are likely related to socially created gender issues – the expectations and social norms related to girls and boys participating in sports. Physically active girls may be teased, or criticized for “not acting like a girl”, or maybe, girls and boys don’t like being compared to one another. We need to learn more.

Given that gender is an important part of the analysis, the initiative should consider:

  • A national marketing strategy aimed at children and youth with a stronger emphasis on identifying and mitigating barriers to girls’ participation in sports;
  • An awareness and promotional initiative aimed at parents and schools on the value of sports for girls and on the need to combat stereotypes.