n African Journal for Physical Health Education, Recreation and Dance - The impact of football on the socialisation of female student-athletes in South Africa : psycho-social perspectives of sports

Special issue 1
  • ISSN : 1117-4315


Many studies have investigated the socialisation impacts on sport participants, but few have examined the reciprocal socialisation that occurs in the households of the children or youth who participate. This paper utilises social cognitive theory, symbolic interactionism and sport socialisation to examine the reciprocal socialisation patterns in South African women's football. Five case studies of families are analysed to describe eight thematic areas of the socialisation factors and changes within the families, as a result of the daughter's participation. Sport is a powerful location to socialise girls into gender roles, and households are influential in this formation. Households impact gender role socialisation through patriarchal values, household composition, sport involvement of significant others, and childhood play activities. The girls are also influential in socialising their households and impacting the way significant others interact and view women's football. In terms of this reciprocal sport socialisation, four types of changes emerged namely: household dynamics and relationships, emotional responses and beliefs, social recognition and pride, and educational perspectives and opportunities.

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