If you don’t like athletics and physical sports, you have probably been wondering what outdoor activities teenage girls can do. I’m going to give you lots of ideas for things you can do on your own or with friends that are good for beginners, don’t cost much, you don’t have to travel for, and don’t involve the pain of hard physical contact.
Athletics Ain’t for Everyone
School PE lessons have a lot to answer for when it comes to how you think about sport and the outdoors. Wet, muddy and freezing cold outdoor PE lessons will be etched into your memory forever. Catching a netball with frozen fingers hurts like hell, not to mention catching a hockey stick or ball in the shin. And don’t even mention what happens to your hair when it gets wet and splatted with mud. Yuk!
Research is constantly highlighting that teenage girls go off PE at secondary school. It’s no surprise when you feel you are physically developing at a different rate to everyone else. Your body is changing and so are your emotions. How you look and feel is such a BIG issue for you. You are discovering and developing your own sense of identity. You are looking for ways to feel good about yourself, and trying to create your own sense of personal style. Image is everything, right? So it’s no wonder that having to do PE activities that make you feel unsure about yourself will put you off sport.
Access and Opportunity
The key issue is that PE lessons don’t expose you to the full range of fantastic sports and activities that you can do. Everyone is different, and you have some amazing skills and talents. All you have to do is find out what makes your soul sing. Unfortunately, until PE lessons change, you may not discover the outdoor activity for you until you are much older, and even then it may be by chance.
PE should be diverse enough to allow every to discover and try a wide range of sports. Having access to different activities while you are a teenager will increase your chances of finding an activity or sport that will keep you fit whilst having fun.
What are you looking for in an Outdoor Activity?
Fun and feel good factor! That’s the key ingredient you should be looking for. We are all designed to do things that make us feel good. When we do, endorphins are released into our bloodstream. This chemical encourages us to do what it takes to get that feeling again. We are all pleasure seekers. It’s that buzz you get when you are with friends, or succeed at some challenge.
So, you need to find an outdoor activity that will first of all make you feel good about yourself, but also have a purpose. This can be done by finding an activity that is:
- Makes you look good
- Is challenging, but has the possibility of success
- Provides health benefits
You may not be any good at a new sport or activity to start with, but keep at it for a while, and you may find you suddenly get it>
Just plain fun
Outdoor activities that are just plain fun are best shared with friends. Your true friends will accept you as you are, and not make judgements.
You could try:
- Ultimate Frisbee
- Crazy golf or mini golf
- Tree climbing and high ropes courses like Go Ape
- Scavenger hunts
- Backyard sleepovers
- Wild Swimming
- Dance, often at concerts
- Theme Parks
- Skipping, especially double dutch
- Zorbing and Sphering
- Water Fights
- Body Boarding
- Kayaking and canoeing
- Snow Tubing and doughnutting
Wildlife, Nature and Animals
Picnics, outdoor photography, wildlife watching, conservation, walking the dog, astronomy…
Time with Friends
Outdoor activities provide the ideal opportunity to share experiences with friends. Trying new activities together gives you all the support and encouragement you need. Plus, you get to talk and laugh about the experience after.
If you fancy doing something a bit more adventurous, have a look at this YouTube video of the amazing skills and abilities of the sports women shown. The activities include quite a few that you wouldn’t usually think about.
Get out there and have fun
So, hopefully you will now have a better idea of some of the wonderful ways that you can spend time outdoors having fun and being active. Try lots of different things, and you are bound to find something that you will fall in love with. I didn’t get into skiing and snowboarding until I was in my 30s. I had the opportunity to go to the French Alps, so I had a few lessons before I went and had a fantastic time. I love it, and want to keep doing it.