THE role of a parent is often under-recognised and undervalued. Let’s look at the skills needed – doctor, economist, taxi driver, mental health champion, cheerleader, role model, to name just a few.

Where mum-daughter relationships and sport are concerned, having a mum to set an example is a powerful motivator.

This statement is backed up by recent research from Women in Sport UK following on from their #TimeTogether campaign, which highlighted the importance of mums and daughters being active together in bringing them closer and helping to build resilience and confidence.

The research also found that 48% of girls feel that their mother is their biggest champion, which means that when girls are encouraged by their mums, they are far more likely to participate.

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The research found that one major impact of Covid-19 was that 55% of girls lost confidence in their sporting ability and 32% of women felt they couldn’t prioritise exercise due to having so many commitments to carry out for others.

Given that studies show that your level of fitness can decline rapidly – in fact in just under two weeks, with a levelling off after several weeks of inactivity – we do have an issue here, and one that needs addressed.

So, while sport is “back” in theory, there are still mountains to climb to get back to the sporting participation level of before.

This is Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week, so it’s a perfect time to kickstart your fitness campaign and support each other along the way. There will be information online with guidance on how to get involved, as all national governing bodies are keen to introduce more females into their clubs.

It is so much easier to take that first step when you have someone with you, and with mother-daughter participation there is an opportunity to solidify and strengthen pre-existing bonds.

While there was still concern from survey participants about getting back out there, it is encouraging that most were aware that whilst getting fit, exercise also has the life-changing capacity to increase confidence and naturally boost mental health.