What's involved in the sessions?

Classic Program Structure 

'Dads-only' workshop (2-hours)

Fathers attend a 'Dads-Only' workshop at the start of the program which shares proven parenting strategies to improve their daughters’ social-emotional well-being, sports skills and physical activity levels. Fathers also learn about the unique and powerful influence dads have on their daughter and parenting strategies to encourage gender equity and empower daughters against the culture of gender prejudice that exists in many aspects of their lives, particularly regarding physical activity.

Daughters and Dads Sessions (90-minutes) 

Daughters and dads spend quality time together participating in eight weekly fun, engaging and educational physical activity and sport skill sessions.

Theme of the week

Each week has a different theme, introduced in a 30-minute education session. These sessions focus on developing key social and emotional skills for girls including self-control, persistence, critical thinking, resilience, and self-reliance. Daughters also learn how to design physical activity sessions at home and become ‘personal trainers’ to motivate their dad to stay active.

Practical activities

Each session also has a 60-minute practical component focusing on 3 key areas - Rough and Tumble Play, Sport Skills and Fitness.  Each of these 3 areas have a strong evidence base for optimising the physical and mental health of girls, but dads also benefit!

1. ROUGH AND TUMBLE PLAY is energetic wrestling based activities in a fun and enjoyable manner. Rough and tumble play allows girls to be physically active with their dad, test and practice physical and social skills, take safe risks and use their strength and fitness to develop physical confidence and social-emotional regulation skills. 

Pellis, S.M., & Pellis, V.C. (2007) Rough-and- Tumble Play and the Development of the Social Brain, Current Directions in Psychological Science, 16(2), 95-98.

2. SPORTS SKILLS are the building blocks required to participate in most forms of physical activity. The Daughters and Dads program focusses on skills including kicking, catching, bouncing, striking and throwing which are foundation ball skills for a wide range of sporting activities. Research shows that children who are proficient in these basic fundamental movement skills are much more likely to be active, fit and have higher levels of physical self-esteem throughout adolescence and adulthood.    

Morgan, P.J. et al. (2013) Fundamental movement skill interventions in youth: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Pediatrics, 132(5), e1361-83

3. FUN FITNESS based games and activities see dads and daughters working together to increase their physical activity and develop both aerobic and muscular fitness      

Lubans, et al. (2010) Fundamental Movement Skills in Children and Adolescents: Review of Associated Health Benefits. Sports Medicine 40(12): 1019-1035.

A home-based program provides additional opportunities for daughters and dads to be active together and reinforce key physical activity and social and emotional wellbeing skills learnt during sessions.  Daughters develop autonomy and leadership skills as they are encouraged to initiate and drive completion of the home program.

Weekender Program Structure 

The Weekender format of the Daughters and Dads program includes all theory and practical components delivered in the Classic program, compressed into a single weekend.

Program Resources

For Dads


For Daughters


For Dads and Daughters

ACTIVITY HANDBOOK - Contains a range of activities for daughters and dads to complete together at home, matching each session theme. Activities include physical activity tracking, goal setting, words of the week, home challenge tasks and sports skill practice. It also includes a great summary of the information presented in the 'Dads-only' workshop.

We are looking for dads and their daughters

Are you a dad who wants to spend quality time with your daughter participating in fun physical activities, whilst learning how to improve her sport skills, confidence, self-esteem and resilience?

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