The stigma behind Netball

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Pardalote Feb 16, 2019 at 10:54 am.

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  • #1189356
    • Posts: 0

    Member since:
    Feb 6, 2019


    I’m currently working on a design project thats main aim is to increase the number of girls playing Netball (London in particular but any answers help) as they approach their early teens to young adult (14-19 years old).

    I would be very grateful if you could fill out a few of these questions to help me get a better understanding of the negative connotations Netball has and things that could debunk them.


    Netball Questionnaire



    Do you play / have you played netball?


    (If you currently play) What are the things that have kept you playing?


    (If you used to play) Why have you stopped playing?


    What do you think would make netball appeal more to people between the ages of 14 -19 years old?


    Feel free to pick and choose questions, any answers are much appreciated even if short.

    Thank you.

    • Posts: 675

    Member since:
    Mar 24, 2013

    Welcome to the forum and what a great topic for a project. I don’t think there is the same stigma in Australia that there may be in the UK.

    Age? 53

    Do you play / have you played netball? Yes played from age 8 until 52 with a long break in-between following 10 knee surgeries.

    (If you currently play) What are the things that have kept you playing? Seeing as I only officially retired last year I’ll answer this one. Mainly because I just love the game. I love the team aspect, competition, fitness and being part of a club community.

    (If you used to play) Why have you stopped playing? Unfortunately I injured my “good” knee last year (I’d only had 3 surgeries on that one!) and an MRI showed osteoarthritis as well as the injury itself. It was time to hang up the dress.

    What do you think would make netball appeal more to people between the ages of 14 -19 years old?

    More visible role models. I think having games televised in Australia and the higher profile of the ANZ comp then Suncorp means that girls are seeing these athletes on a regular basis. As they say “you can’t be what you can’t see”.

    Also the “stigma” of it being a girly game has been well and truly nixed with these competitions (perhaps not with many males) so teens can see that it is a tough and competitive sport but they also see the sportsmanship and camaraderie which is important.

    In the UK I’m not sure of how many comps are outdoors but I think that would definitely be a factor in winter!

    Being able to see players representing brands that they identify with also helps I think. This is something that I don’t think has been common in the UK until recently?


    Good luck with it.


    • Posts: 543

    Member since:
    Jan 29, 2017

    Age: 46

    Yes I play in Tyne and Wear County League. I play for a works team but we don’t train as there are no facilities.

    I keep playing for the enjoyment factor and partly for fitness. Watching netball on TV has probably kept me playing longer than I would have as watching makes me want to play.

    I think schools have a lot to do with whether teenagers in this age group play. My friends 2 daughters attended a school with a strong netball tradition and links with a strong well established club so they both played all through school and on at university. My daughter  (despite my efforts) hasn’t had the same exposure, as her school wasn’t interested (more effort was put into female football sigh) so none of her friends played netball and there wasn’t much incentive for her  to play. There are no clubs in our area so the thought of going to one outside the area where she knew no one put her off and now she’s just lost the original interest she had at 14.

    I think it’s great that the profile of netball has been raised over the last few years in the UK and undoubtedly televised matches help. I think sadly that until we see one or two netball players on reality TV (which unfortunately is pervasive over here) will still remain unknown to the general public and therfore can’t become the role models they deserve to be over here!!

    Hope this helps.

    • Posts: 80

    Member since:
    Sep 5, 2016

    I think there’s a larger problem, which is trying to keep that age group of girls doing any physical activity or sport.

    I’m in NZ so there’s no stigma against netball, although it is losing ground to other sports like basketball and rugby. But unless they are really sporty, lots of girls stop playing around that age. They get busy with school work and after school jobs, but also team sport becomes uncool and too much like hard work. (I’m speaking as the Mum of a teenage girl here.)

    Maybe if it could be promoted as a fun way to keep fit and stay healthy? And if it could be a bit more fun and casual, with less of the nit-picking rules around uniforms etc.

    • Posts: 2831

    Member since:
    Apr 23, 2011


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