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The Relation Of Women, Sports And Stereotypes

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When people hear “female athletes” they immediately think they’re “too sensitive,” “not good enough” or “weak.” Women are stereotyped as the “universal caretaker,” meaning that women are responsible for everything that needs to be completed within the household; for example, cooking, cleaning, or laundry. This stereotype on women has entirely ruined any female’s social approval to become an athlete. Female athletes are repeatedly criticized when stepping outside the publicly “normal” sports or when they partake in sports that involved competitive performances. It humiliates even females who are not essentially athletes. Females are humiliated when playing any kind of “manly” sport.

This is unreasonable for women. Women inhabit an everyday lifestyle that they are content with. However, with all these damaging beliefs, it has affected most women to where they avoid what they love to do. The common belief about women is that they are “not good at sports.” The reason for this is that people perceive women as careless, weak and incompetent when many women are hard-working, strong and skilled.

Women are viewed negatively when playing a sport because they are considered too weak. Women athletes do tend to be weaker and slower than men. Though, people perceive them as weak because of their womanliness. When individuals think of a feminine female, they seem to imagine them inclining more on the delicate or gentle side. In addition to being misinterpreted as weak, women athletes are also occasionally believed as careless and incompetent because of their femininity. People interpret women athletes to be careless and incompetent because they believe females are more likely to take sports in a hasty way; and that the outcome of this will have women lack in skill. Although, some female athletes do fit these stereotypes. These assumptions are not unproven all the time and they can have some virtue. However, all these philosophies are inexact and need to come to an end.

Athletic females are characterized as “not good” at playing sports because they are viewed as careless; the truth is, they can be the most hard-working players. For example, Jackie Joyner-Kersee an American retired track and field athlete. Joyner-Kersee became one of the greatest athletes in history. She worked hard for everything she accomplished. Still, people think female athletes are careless in sports. Individuals assume that women don’t take sports as “serious” as men do. Most women who are athletes or wish to become one know that they must take sports seriously. Considering how female athletes must have more determination to be able to become successful in a male conquered world of sports.

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Women athletes play their hardest during a game and practice relentlessly to become great athletes. They work their way into sports, continuously proving that they are not only good but great. Throughout the history of sports, women’s participation has improved. However, there are still complications in today’s female athletic community. Women athletes are still being overshadowed by men. Then again, for female athletes, the problem is when their womanhood or femininity does not fit the sports they are playing. But because women must go through so many obstacles to become successful in the athletic world; it has created them to be more hard-working than ever before.

Women who are athletes are usually perceived as weak. This is occasionally true, however, women can be strong in their own aspect. For example, Rebecca Longo an American football kicker, also the first woman to earn a college football scholarship. Longo is the opposite of weak; in fact, she is the perfect definition of a strong woman. According to Longo’s coach, Timm Rosenbach the head coach at Adams State; “Longo has great accuracy and a powerful leg, which will only get stronger” (Anderson). This shows that women are also strong enough to take part in sports. People think the reason women are not seen as top athletes is that their bodies do not function in the same way as males. This is logical, considering that men are much stronger and have more muscle than women. According to Dr. Robert H. Shmerling a faculty editor at Harvard Medical School, “women are more prone than men to suffer from sports-related injuries.” However, it does not mark women as “too weak” to play sports; men get hurt, too. Female bodies do not differ enough from male bodies to the point that it prevents them from taking part in any “manly” sports. People are so inclined to stereotype men as the perfect gender in sports because of their strength. Although, an athlete considered “good” should not be based on strength but by the accuracy and competence.

Another common opinion about women athletes is that they are incompetent or incapable to play sports. The reason for these assumptions is because of women athletes constantly compared to men athletes; For example, the assumption of inferiority refers to the notion that women are less physically able than men (Sue 2010). Conversely, women devote themselves to their sport; bringing an intense essence of skill into play. Female athletes spend most of their time and energy practicing or working out to enhance their skills and abilities for a game; this shows the capability women have in a sport because of their motivation to being “good” athlete. We live in a world where women’s abilities are undervalued because they are different, but who said different means “not good enough?”

The stigma that women in sports are inferior is still common. Therefore, female athletes all around the world are sticking together and fighting against these appalling opinions. Female athletes are continually trying to prove that they are the world’s utmost hardworking and skilled athletes. Earning medals, accomplishing their goals, and doing what they love is the way they prove to people that not only men are good at sports. These women are determined to show their worth and abilities; regardless of all the negative assumptions; it truly shows their importance in sports.

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The Relation Of Women, Sports And Stereotypes. (2022, February 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved May 29, 2023, from
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