Posted in Featured News , Female Football , Front Page News

From by Jennifer Phelan.

FEMALE participation in Australian football soared by 46 per cent this year, further highlighting the need for the AFL to establish a national women’s competition.

There were 163 new female football teams that began in 2015, with the number of women now taking part in the game reaching 284,501.

With the League keen to capitalise on the success of the recent Melbourne-Western Bulldogs women’s exhibition matches with the establishment of a national competition in the next few years, females playing the game now makes up 22 per cent of all participants.

It’s an increase of 19 per cent overall from 2014.

And, participation across both genders has broken a new record with total figures growing to 1,247,610 nationally this year, which is an eight per cent rise on 2014.

An additional 2,013,172 people were engaged through school or community based clinics and promotions, which is a growth of 33 per cent from 1,500,000 in 2014.

The results were unveiled on Tuesday morning at Wesley College, with AFL general manager of game and market development Simon Lethlean buoyed by the figures.

“The record growth in female football follows the success of the two AFL women’s exhibition matches this year, the second of which was televised live across Australia, and reinforces the need to establish a national female competition,” Lethlean said.

“Australian Football is the greatest game in the world and the industry as a whole has made a considerable effort to make sure it is a safe, inclusive and fun environment that provides opportunities for everyone, regardless of their background, gender or ability.”

Want to get involved? The SMJFL is planning on having four girls only age groups in 2016: U9, U12, U15 & Youth Girls (U18). Please contact SMJFL Girls Football Coordinator, Stephen Zayler ( for further details.

Click on the below image for more information on AFL Victoria specific participation rates.

AFL Victoria Participation Rates Summary

AFL Victoria Participation Rates Summary