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CIF Releases Sports Participation Figures

By: Staff Report
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High school sports participation in California is on the rise, according to the 2011 California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) Sports Participation Survey. Up by 2.9% since the previous survey in 2009, an additional 21,006 student-athletes are competing in California high school athletic programs; 757,733 boys and girls combined. “The increased growth and interest in high school athletic participation is encouraging even during these hard economic times when some of our schools are forced to reduce their sports programs,” said CIF Executive Director Marie M. Ishida. “Athletics is an integral part of the high school experience and as more student-athletes decide to compete, the CIF will continue to foster the best possible experiences for all participants.” Individually, both boys (14,476 or 3.3%) and girls (6,530 or 2.2%) participation increased from 2009. Collectively, track and field experienced the largest increase (9.8%) for both boys and girls for a combined 9,122 new participants (6,233 or 12.1% increase for boys; 2,889 or 6.9% increase for girls). Additionally, cross country also registered notable growth (9.4% increase) from 2009 for a combined 4,564 total increase of boys (2,814 or 10.5% increase) and girls (1,750 or 8.0% increase) competing. Football continues to lead the top 10 boys’ sports with 103,921 participants, followed by track and field (57,922) and soccer (47,078), which increased participation by 5.3% since 2009; basketball (43,176) and baseball (42,977) round out the top five boys’ sports. For girls, track and field continues reign as the top 10 sport with 44,625 participants. Soccer participation increased by 2.4 % (42,720) and comes in a close second followed by volleyball (39,122), basketball (32,839) and softball (32,816) rounding out the top five girls’ sports. The CIF’s 1,517 member schools participated in the survey as part of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) nationwide survey that measures the number of students competing in sports in the country. ~ Staff report