The Washington PostThe Washington Post

How full-contact tackle football became 'therapy' for these girls

By Cathy Free

08 Aug 2022 · 6 min read

Editor's Note

You should ready this inspirational story of how young girls engrossed in a game of full-contact American football are overcoming other stressors in their lives and feeling empowered.

Naliyah Rueckert went through a hard time after her parents split up. But at age 13 she found an outlet for her anger in an unlikely place: on a field, playing tackle football.

An all-girls full-contact tackle football league had recently started near her hometown of Midvale, Utah, and Naliyah's mother, Renica Rueckert, thought the sport would be good for her.

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