The award-winning ‘This Girl Can’ campaign, which first launched in January 2015, set out to encourage more women to play sports, challenging the common perceptions of women that they constantly need to conform to the unrealistic standards set by the media.
The nationwide campaign was born from the discovery that the numbers of men playing regular sport far outweighed that of women by every measure (two million fewer 14 to 40 year olds in total), despite the fact that “75% of women would like to do more.”
With insights revealing that “millions of women and girls are afraid to exercise because of fear of judgement”, Sport England saw an opportunity “to get women and girls moving, regardless of shape, size and ability”, by telling the real stories of women who play sport, in direct opposition to the idealised and stylised images of women we usually see.
Achieving national success, the campaign’s flagship film was viewed by over 13 million people, and resulted in almost 150,000 women becoming regularly active in England since its launch.
“The figures on participation are crystal clear”, says Sport England CEO Jennie Price.“There is a significant gender gap, with two million more men than women exercising or playing sport regularly.”
“I believe we can tackle this gap, because our research shows that 75% of women would like to do more.”