(CNN) When I ask my girls, ages 8 and 10, what they want to be when they grow up, my younger daughter says a professional athlete (she's not sure which sport just yet!) and my older daughter says an Olympian in track and field. With those goals, I simply cannot imagine they won't be playing sports throughout middle and high school
What sports can do for girls Building confidence in girls is crucial, especially when surveys show that their confidence dramatically drops around puberty. In a national survey of 1,800 people sponsored by Always last year, 89% of girls 16 to 24 said there is pressure to conform to the way a girl is supposed to feel and act. Seventy-nine percent of girls who believe that society puts girls in boxes think that if society stopped pressuring girls, they would be more confident, the survey found.