Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2016

Document Type


Type of Thesis

Departmental Honors



First Advisor

Leslie Irvine

Second Advisor

Isaac Reed

Third Advisor

Ajume Wingo


This thesis examines the importance of coaching methods for girls playing soccer. It differentiates between the methods coaches implement while training boys and training girls. The research indicates that soccer constitutes a space in which girls can gain self-esteem from an external source, namely their soccer coaches. These coaches provide this source of self-esteem in a way that both encourage girls to act within the realm of femininity while also exhibiting traits predominantly masculine traits, such as strength and competitiveness. By comparing soccer programs in Brazil and Boulder County, this thesis also begins work to show that, sometimes socio-economic disparities do not differentiate the gendered coaching methods that perpetuate the inequalities of the genders in soccer, while also providing girls a strong, external source of self-esteem.