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#skatelikeagirl | Making 'action sport' girls

Monday, July 22, 2019

Deb Garea, our fundamental movement skills advisor, chats about why #skatelikeagirl is such a strong message for the next generation of young girls wanting to give action sports a go.

I love Youtube and Instagram. It’s my way as a parent of finding role models that my six year old Daisy can watch, follow and copy. Take Sky Brown for instance. Eleven-year-old skateboarder and surfer with a fearlessness that’s creating a new generation of action sports girls. Her message is strong: #skatelikeagirl to inspire the next generation of girls that they can do anything.

skate like a girl_web

With the addition of speed climbing, skateboarding and surfing in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics we have a whole new generation of action sports girls coming through. Nowadays if you take your girls to the skate ramps at Blake Park, often there is a group of Mount Maunganui College school girls having skateboard lessons – it's awesome and something we would not have seen two years ago.

So how do we make brave, gutsy, action sport girls? We learn. We practice. Let’s not caution them when there seems to be a risk. Buy them skateboards, boogie boards, scooters and mountain bikes. Let them make their own decisions. We need to give our girls opportunities to climb trees, skateboard and encourage risky play to allow them to build confidence. Being outside allows them to do this and we as parents need to role-model the same.

Let’s take our girls to new locations that include parks/reserves, beaches and forests. Places that include water and opportunities to explore and be free – all elements that tick boxes for girls wanting to be let loose in the outdoors. It’s about being connected to the outdoors and I have to remind myself to stop saying “be careful” to my six year old all the time as she tries new tricks, jumps and moves.

So here are some ideas of where you can take your gutsy girls for active adventures. We may just see you there!

Blake Park, Mount Maunganui Netball Courts

Skateboarding, skate ramps – half pipe and skateboard, grass, netball courts to skate on.

Waiaka Reserve, Maungawhare Place, Otumoetai

You can do rolly-pollys down the big hill, explore the bush area, make huts and check out the stream.

Motoriki Island, Mount Maunganui

Off the beaten track, children can lead you on an adventure over the rock face, up the steep track, through the enchanted forest and explore. So much climbing just like in the Olympics. Get your girls climbing.

Fantail Reserve, Fantail Drive, Maungatapu

There is a grassy reserve where you can explore the estuary, loads of mud, plenty of hermit crabs and a secret cave around the corner of the headland. There is a short bush walk through the daisy flowers.

Sydenham Botanic Park, Tauranga

There are two levels with grass fields and a bamboo forest. Great for exploring.

Harrisons cut boat ramp, Pāpāmoa

There are steep sand dunes, logs to climb and a steam running from the ocean along to steep hills to explore.
Take your boogie board/surfboard and catch some waves.

Matua Saltmarsh – Elmes Reserve end

Lots of mud, with walks along the boardwalk and water to play in.

Redwoods, Rotorua

Take a trip to the redwoods and ride around the Kids Loop, Tahi Track and Dipper. A great place to get your girls out on their bikes!

If you're keen to find more outdoor parks and reserves to explore, then check out the Virtually of Track website which lists loads of great locations and has lots of free scavenger hunt activities to download.

Virtually on Track

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