2018 ANNUAL REPORT
Another Year for the Books.
"DIG it! is a place for champions and individuals who are great role models."
Data compiled by DIG it! Volleyball, Inc.
Data compiled by DIG it! Volleyball, Inc.
A national evaluation found that over 40 percent of students attending 21st Century Community Learning Center programs improved their reading and math grades, and that those who attended more regularly were more likely to make gains (Naftzger et. al., 2007).
Effective after school programs can improve classroom behavior (Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, 2010), school attendance, academic aspirations, and can reduce the likelihood that a student will drop out (Huang, Leon, La Torre, Mostafavi, 2008).
After school programs can play an important role in encouraging physical activity and good dietary habits. Participation in after school programs has been associated with positive health outcomes, including reduced obesity (Mahoney, J., Lord, H., & Carryl, 2005).
Half of all girls who participate in some kind of sport experience higher than average levels of self esteem and less depression. (Colton, M. & Gore, S. (1991). "Risk, Resiliency, and Resistance: Current Research on Adolescent Girls" Ms. Foundation for Women).
Research suggests that girls who participate in sports are more likely to experience academic success and graduate from high school than those who do not play sports. (Sabo, D., Melnick, M. & Vanfossen (1989). Women's Sports Foundation Report: Minorities in Sports. Women's Sports Foundation.)
Despite a social push to improve the educational quality with our nation’s urban and rural schools, the number of athletic opportunities for elementary aged girls is very minimal. According to “Go Out and Play: Youth Sports in America” a study done by the Women’s Sports Foundation,
In 2010, the Centers for Disease Control reported a positive correlation between students who participated in high levels of physical activity and improved academic achievement, decreased risk of heart disease and diabetes, improved weight control, and less psychologic dysfunction. (20)
In 2009, The Woman’s Sports Foundation published an updated version of “Her Life Depends on It”, an evidence-based research project stressing the important role that physical activity and sports play in the lives of girls and women.23 Positive health benefits for physically active young girls include a reduced risk for developing breast cancer, osteoporosis, heart disease, and obesity in the future.23 Further, rates of teenage pregnancy, unprotected sexual intercourse, smoking, drug use, and suicide decrease with increasing physical activity and participation in sports.22,23
It is not always easy to measure the impact of wellness education and playing a youth sport will have on an individual as many of these differences are intangible including someone’s image of self, sense of empowerment, or self-confidence. However, we do believe there are other ways to measure some of the impact that DIG it! is making.
At the beginning of the season, each DIG it! participant will complete the PACER test which is a nationally recognized aerobic capacity test that has been adapted from the classic 20-meter shuttle run test, as well as a push up and sit up test.
The participants will also be tested at the end of the season to see if their general fitness and aerobic capacity has improved from being exposed to the constant exercise in the DIG it! program. Just in the first year, we saw dramatic increases in the aerobic fitness in almost every girl that participated.
The influence of friendship and peer interactions cannot be underestimated for the female athlete.24 When the relationship between participation in sport, extracurricular activities, and social well-being was examined, students who engaged in sport demonstrated more psychosocial benefits compared with those who were active in after-school programs not related to sport.24,25 Three different studies involving adolescents in 2003 found that those who participated in extracurricular activities, including sports, demonstrated improved skills in goal setting, time management, emotional control, leadership, wisdom, social intelligence, cooperation, and self-exploration.5,26,27 Teenagers who participate in team sports are happier, have increased self-esteem, and are less anxious, with a decreased risk of suicidal behavior.24,28