soccer for girls, coaching girls soccer, beautiful, boston breakers coaching film, why girl soccer players are different

I’m a Girl Soccer Player: Coach Me Differently

The Word Syndicate, a Massachusetts-based production company, is teaming up with the Boston Breakers, one of America’s premier women’s professional soccer teams, to produce a groundbreaking new film for girls called “Beautiful: Teaching Girls Soccer the Boston Breakers Way” but they need your help!

Kickstarter Project for Girls Soccer with the Boston Breakers

Kickstarter funding is all or nothing – if we don’t reach our fundraising goal in 30 days, “Beautiful” will not be made.

Girls and Soccer: The Positives

Soccer offers huge benefits for girls – the self-confidence, the friendships, the joy taken in hard work and achievement. And those are just the results you can see. Studies show that girls who play soccer and other sports reap benefits that stay with them throughout their lives, including:

  • Better grades in school
  • Better jobs after college
  • Lowered risks of obesity and other health problems
  • Lowered likelihood of involvement in early sexual activity

Girls and Soccer: The Down Side

But girls’ soccer also has a lesser-known dark side. Young female players are different from boys in fundamental ways, both physically and psychologically – and the failure to address those differences has led to a rash of problems. Here are just a few:

  • Girls who play soccer are more likely to suffer a serious concussion than any other young athlete except boys who play tackle football (more than boys who play soccer, lacrosse, or hockey)!!
  • After puberty, girls are as much as six times more likely to suffer a serious knee injury (ACL, MCL) injury than a boy playing the same sport.
  • Inappropriate coaching and competitive pressure to win and train harder and longer are resulting in higher rates of burnout and girls quitting, potentially depriving them of a lifetime of benefits.
  • The top women’s coaches in the world all say that girl athletes process information and feedback very differently from boys – but that those differences aren’t widely understood or regularly incorporated into youth coaching.

And speaking of girls, soccer and concussions …


March is Brain Injury Awareness Month

When a bump on the head is more than just a bump…

A concussion is a traumatic brain injury (TBI). It can result from any force to the head that causes injury to brain cells, such as a contact sport injury, a fall, or whiplash from a car accident. Concussions can occur in any organized or unorganized sport or recreational activity. CDC estimates that 1.7 million Americans sustain a TBI, including concussions, each year. Of those individuals, 52,000 die, 275,000 are hospitalized, and 1.4 million are treated and released from an emergency department. The injured person does not need to lose consciousness to have a concussion. Symptoms can show up right away or days or weeks after the injury.

Symptoms of a concussion may include:

  • Nausea
  • Dizziness or balance problems
  • Double or fuzzy vision
  • Headache
  • Sensitivity to light or noise
  • Feeling sluggish or tired
  • Confusion
  • Trouble concentrating or remembering

Parents and caregivers may notice additional concussion symptoms:

  • Appears dazed or stunned
  • Forgets an instruction
  • Moves clumsily
  • Shows behavior or personality changes
  • Is unsure of game, score or opponent
  • Can’t recall events before or after hit or fall

If you think your child may have a concussion, seek medical attention right away. A concussion often does not appear in MRI or CAT scans. A health care provider will be able to decide how serious the concussion is and when it is safe for your child to return to academics, sports and recreational activities. Children who return to sports and activities too soon risk a greater chance or having a second concussion. Second or later concussions can cause permanent brain damage.

To prevent a concussion, ensure your child follows the rules, whether they’re the rules of the game or the rules of the road. Make sure children wear the right protective equipment for their activity such as helmet, padding, eye and mouth guards or shin guards. Parents should learn the signs and symptoms of a concussion, and should keep their child out of a sports game or activity after a concussion. Remind children that it’s better to miss a game or two than the whole season.

Information from

soccer for girls, coaching girls soccer, beautiful, boston breakers coaching film, why girl soccer players are different

What do you think of girls and soccer? Do your girls play? Have you noticed a lot of injuries? Do you want this film made? Please share!

By Mia Wenjen, PragmaticMom


  1. This video is so important. As a parent I was never involved with a daughter playing soccer, but my daughter was heavily involved in track and swimming. I also coached the girls’ track team for six years. The school often did not allow for separate practice time and we did not have separate facilities, The boys’ coach did not see the need for different training practices and this sometimes became a problem. Parents also were sometimes ignorant of the reasons behind how and why we trained the way we did. Videos like these are needed to show the differences between girls’ and boys’ sports in general and to raise awareness of how to prevent injuries.

    • Hi Barbara,
      I agree! Girls are built differently than boys and this becomes a huge factor in how they train for sports. Girls are much more prone of ACL injuries (blowing out their knees) so preventative measures like very thorough warm up and stretching is so important.

      I hope parents can watch this before we head into Spring soccer season. It’s a good reminder for me as we head off to a soccer game today for my middle daughter! Next week is the start of our Spring season when the soccer really intensifies.
      Pragmatic Mom recently posted…I’m a Girl Soccer Player … Coach Me DifferentlyMy Profile

  2. Giora

    Informative article, with the list of positives and negatives for girls and soccer. Hopefully your girls will not have major injuries while playing. I’m curious to watch the different soccer practices for girls vs. the boys. It’s nice to see that their kick start campaign raised almost half of the money.
    Giora recently posted…Vienna + Schlager MusicMy Profile

    • Hi Giora,
      My oldest has had repeated injuries to her foot and knee. It’s soccer related but she also has tight hamstrings. Luckily, her coach insists that they warm up and stretch for over one hour. We have to get there 45 minutes early for her to warm up with her team on their own, and then the coach stretches them out and warms up with a regimin meant to prevent injuries. At 12 and 13, the girls need it as their bodies are changing so rapidly.

      I’m glad the kickstarter campaign is going so well! It is important stuff they are doing.
      Pragmatic Mom recently posted…Book Club for Kids: Chapter Book on Knights, Princesses and CastlesMy Profile

  3. I’m glad you are raising awareness about this! A lot of people don’t realize that soccer can be a dangerous sport, especially if you are playing without being aware of the risks.
    maryanne recently posted…Writing and Illustrating Children’s Books: Angela DominguezMy Profile

  4. Tee

    I have a young daughter that plays soccer….among other ports & girls activities like dance, cheerleading, gymnastics, etc. her first immersion of occur, I wasn’t the coach because I was expecting twins. After their still birth, I ended up taking over for the patch who quit. I have continued to coach her girls teams! I love it! I’m glad o see people sharing this kind of stuff! The risk are there! My daughter got a back injury from soccer in the fall. Had her out for a month! My daughters only going on 6 years old, but I still make sure the kids are playing safe. Stretching, warming up (especially on cold days!!!) & the like! Thanks for doing your part in the awareness process!!!!

  5. Better performance needs better practice and guidance from coach professionals.

  6. Even girls can compete nowadays.
    Knee pain Melbourne recently posted…Shoulder PainMy Profile

  7. Allowing the girls to play sports, soccer or any other, do help them in a number of ways. What we, moms, are really worried about are the injuries. I hope for your girls’ safety whenever they play.
    Laura recently posted…Barcelona Come Back From the Dead to Win Champions League TieMy Profile

    • Thanks Laura! Injury prevention for girls (and boys) in all sports is so important. I think we are just learning about concussions and how to prevent them now, but it’s still in the early stages because doctors don’t really know that much about concussions; it’s a fairly new specialization in medicine.
      Pragmatic Mom recently posted…Phonics Museum AppMy Profile

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