The issue of girls and boys wanting to play in each other’s teams may arise occasionally. This isn’t a concern when children are young, but it can become more complex as players approach adolescence and differences in physiology and ability begin to emerge.
Information to help you understand the issue
Click here to go to the Girls Playing on Boys' Teams Interactive Scenario.
- Generally girls and boys prefer to play in same sex teams.
- Some girls want to compete with boys (and vice versa), especially if there is not an equivalent same sex team available.
- Girls and boys do play in mixed teams, particularly when sports are modified or a team could not otherwise be fielded.
- Age and gender are not always good indicators of ability e.g., there are strong, agile girls and weak, poorly co-ordinated boys and vice versa.
- Each situation is different and there are no easy answers.
Although the law allows for sports to have separate teams, if you prevent a girl playing in a boy’s team (and vice versa) it may be unlawful discrimination.
The area is not clear cut and has been tested in court with different results.