The best sports for girls include basketball, swimming, gymnastics, and tennis.

Best Sports for Girls – 8 Most Popular Women’s Sports

Girls can enjoy various types of sports, from swimming to football. Playing sports helps train your body, meet friends, and develop healthy self-esteem. In the past, certain sporting activities were wrongly reserved for boys only. Thankfully, times have changed. There’s a wide range of the best sports for girls to enjoy equally.

Girls who play sports stand to reap many physical and psychological benefits as adults. It is important to enrol children in sports as a form of exercise. Many parents are looking to enrol their daughters or female wards in sporting activities. If so, you may want to consider your child’s interests and type of gear before doing so. 

From soccer to gymnastics, there are many exciting sports for female athletes to enjoy. Here is a list of the best sports for girls.


Basketball is the best sport for girls to play.
DescriptionBest sport for upper body strength
Female athleteTamika Catchings

Basketball is one of the best sports for girls who enjoy running and high-energy activities. The game involves two teams of five dribbling to shooting the ball in a hoop on the opposite side. On top of this, it’s also one of the more recognized names in the United States. Elite basketball players can play in the WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association), turning their hobby into one of the best paying jobs for women.

Basketball is one of the games that are great for developing upper body strength. The sport also encourages team-building skills since it requires teamwork and coordination. When it comes to the gear, this game only requires a ball, strong sports shoes, and a hoop. You don’t have to worry too much about the cost to enjoy playing basketball.

Basketball Pros

  • Develop upper body strength
  • Improve hand-eye coordination
  • Build self-esteem

Basketball Cons

  • Risk of injuries
  • High-pressure competition


Swimming is one of the most popular sports for girls.
DescriptionBest sport for agility
Female athletePenny Oleksiak

Swimming is a great physical sport for girls. It’s versatile and can be enjoyed as an individual or team sport. As an individual sport, there’s an opportunity for girls to develop a lifetime hobby. It’s also versatile and can require intense training to master all the different techniques. 

This sport is ideal for girls who don’t enjoy physically exerting sports like soccer or volleyball that involve running. The required gear is also simple: swimming trunks, goggles, and a swim cap. Best of all, swimming is useful outside sports. If you visit the beach for a family travel destination, you will be delighted your child is an avid swimmer in the sea.

Swimming Pros

  • Health benefits for the body
  • Great for fitness
  • Not too physically strenuous

Swimming Cons

  • May cause skin allergies
  • Exhausting over long periods


Soccer is one of the best sports for girls to learn about teamwork.
DescriptionBest sport for lower body strength
Female athleteChristine Sinclair

Soccer a popular sport amongst schoolgirls all over the world. Soccer is a game where two teams of 11 players kick and dribble a ball to place it in the opposite goal post. Like basketball, the required gear in this game is simple. Players only need a pair of athletic shoes and a soccer ball. 

Soccer also involves a great deal of running and teamwork since each player has to run point with ten other teammates. Another high point of this game is that it helps girls build lower body strength.

Soccer Pros

  • Develop lower body strength
  • Improve fitness quickly
  • Build team spirit

Soccer Cons

  • High risk of injuries
  • Time-consuming sport


Gymnastics is one of the best sports for girls' self-esteem.
DescriptionBest sport for improving posture
Female athleteSimone Biles

Gymnastics are the best sports for girls’ self-esteem. Many young girls achieve ground-breaking feats every year at the Olympics, especially in the gymnastics category. Simone Biles rose to fame after she won multiple gold medals in gymnastics, shattering world records. Interestingly, girls as young as toddlers can participate in this sport. 

One of the benefits of gymnastics is that it allows girls to build self-confidence, physical strength, and tenacity. Early participation also helps enhance the body’s posture and improve bone health. A gymnast’s most essential tool is their leotard, ranging from affordable to pricey depending on the quality. 

Gymnastics Pros

  • Improve posture & bone health
  • Build self-esteem
  • Mental health benefits

Gymnastics Cons

  • Injuries are common
  • Require lots of practice


Volleyball is one of the top sports for girls.
DescriptionBest sport for teamwork
Female athleteJordan Larson

Volleyball is another high-intensity game that works well for girls. It’s a sport that requires a great amount of teamwork. The game involves six players in two teams playing to land the ball on the opposing side. For a good reason, it’s one of the most played team sports by girls in America. It’s enjoyable and also requires a great deal of physical activity. 

Volleyball can be played as an outdoor or indoor game – on the beach or even on an open field. The essential gear to have is a kneepad. 

Volleyball Pros

  • Emphasis on teamwork
  • Make new friends
  • Not too exhausting

Volleyball Cons

  • Risk of hand injuries
  • Dependent on team performance


Baseball is one of the best sports for girls who love the outdoors.
DescriptionBest sport for strength building
Female athleteToni Stone

Baseball requires less physical activity than many sports on this list. This sport is a teambuilding effort which involves nine players on both teams batting a ball and running to touch bases. It is an ideal sport for girls to learn about teamwork.

While players don’t have to run as fast as in basketball, baseball helps girls with strength building. Pitching also requires hand-eye coordination and upper body strength. The equipment includes a bat, a pair of gloves, a softball, and a helmet.

Baseball Pros

  • Train upper body strength
  • Improve hand-eye coordination
  • Learn about teamwork

Baseball Cons

  • Requires various heavy equipment
  • Lots of running involved


Tennis is one of the good sports for girls to play.
DescriptionBest sport for reaction speed
Female athleteSerena Williams

Tennis is one of the most popular sports for girls. A significant reason for its popularity is Serena Williams, a famous role model for many young girls today. Tennis is easily one of the best sports for girls who aspire to be the next iconic legend.

Tennis can be enjoyed as an individual or team sport. Although tennis involves minimal running, the sport can be intense since it is fast-paced. Required gear for tennis is easily accessible and includes light clothing, a tennis ball, and a racket.

Tennis Pros

  • Develop reaction speed
  • Improve hand-eye coordination
  • Fitness benefits

Tennis Cons

  • Expensive sport
  • Training is limited to courts

Field Hockey

Field hockey is one of the top women's sports.
SportField hockey
DescriptionBest sport for muscle flexibility
Female athleteLuciana Aymar

Field hockey is one of the top women’s sports. You may think hockey only works on ice, making it dangerous. Well, wait till you see kids play field hockey. Field hockey uses the same technique as ice hockey. The only difference is the location and the type of ball used. 

Field hockey is a fast-paced game that positively impacts body functions like hand-eye coordination, calf strength and muscle flexibility. The essential field hockey gear includes the clothing and the hockey stick.

Field Hockey Pros

  • Improve muscle flexibility
  • Increase calf strength
  • Sharpen coordination

Field Hockey Cons

  • Lots of physical contact
  • Injuries can easily occur
What is the best sport for a girl to play?

Basketball is one of the best sports for girls. This competitive sport teaches children many physical skills, including dexterity, upper body strength, and hand-eye coordination. Additionally, basketball carries cerebral benefits like determination, teamwork, and adaptability.

What is the hardest sport for a girl?

Field hockey is an incredibly aggressive sport with lots of physical contact. It is ideal for energetic girls who enjoy the thrill of competition. This sport can be physically demanding, but it builds strength and resilience in female athletes.

What is the easiest girl sport?

Swimming is one of the easier sports for girls. It is an independent activity that allows girls to move at their own comfortable pace. Once the athletes get used to navigating in the water, they will feel at ease swimming laps around the pool.

Are there any female only sports?

Softball, artistic swimming, and rhythmic gymnastics are the three female-only sports. They are exclusive to girls and there is no male equivalent of these sports.

What sport is good for self-confidence?

Gymnastics is an excellent sport to build self-esteem in girls. The sport requires practice, precision, and perfection. Completing a complex gymnastics routine can offer athletes a sense of pride and accomplishment.