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It is time that we all see gender as a spectrum instead of two sets of opposing ideologies. Gender inequality is a social issue, which refers to unfair rights between female and male, which leads to discrimination and unfair treatment. Over the historic times, we have never been able to escape this issue and despite the improvements for reducing gender inequality, a great deal of work must still be done. Nevertheless, you might ask yourself, does gender inequality happen in sport? People will be startled like a vibration of a bell, that this issue happens in sport. Numerous of athletes experience this inequality in sport, primarily because men are meant to be more muscular, stronger, and aggressive, compared to women who are meant to be more gentle, softer, and sensitive. This leads to people making stereotypical comments, such as: “woman can’t do all sports only some” and “you throw like a girl”. This considerably deters females away from sports since they don’t have the motivation as they know they will not be treated fairly. In this essay, It will provide convincing arguments and statistics on why inequality needs to be taken seriously and improved immediately.
Gender pay gap is one of the most undisguised ares of prejudicial views. Historically, participation in sports has been discriminatory, with males being favoured over females, which is why women are so far behind men when getting paid in sport. For instance; 88% of players in the Woman’s Super League in were earning less than Â£18,000 a year? That is as shocking as a bird landing on a live wire, to see such a dreadful figure, compared to men in the premier league had a share of 2.6 million in the same year! Recognising data, allows us to process the question, who can influence to change this. “You” are the answer. Any individual can act and people need to be educated and taught about physical and sociological side that affects women. Furthermore, women should celebrate the female competition as their own version of the sport instead of a female version of a males dominated sport. Woman’s tennis has had the most victorious and successful impact on “breaking the glass ceiling” and helping break down the barrier of climbing to the top level within their sport. For example, At the biggest tournaments (Australian Open and Wimbledon), women and men have been rewarded the same prize money since 2007. They have been one of the first sports to recognise and highlight this important issue and took immediate action. Educating the public on gender diversity and how important we should celebrate everyone’s strength and weaknesses has now significantly reduced many stereotypical views.
Additionally, an issue that causes gender inequality in sports is the media. Most people, whether or not they play or watch sport, are aware of sport through mainstream television. This includes: local, national and international sport. Sport media is male dominated around the world and as a result of this in 2019, a survey showed that 76% of sport watchers preferred to watch male sports rather than woman sports. Media is massively appreciated by citizens due the endless benefits it has to offer. Watch a sporting event on television in the comfort of their own home rather going to the big event appeals to a much greater margin as statistics show that 2,000 sports viewers found 51 per cent would prefer to watch sports at home. In contrast, the media has got its negatives and can be a terrifying experience for athletes and can cause them to have significant high levels of anxiety . In perspective, imagine getting ready to perform your routine that you have have worked on for years to showcase once at a huge competition, imagine all 1000 spectators and athletes having eyes on every move you perform, imagine the further 10 million plus people watching you at home. We physically and mentally can’t put ourselves in that scenario until we experience it, but the constant thoughts and fears would significantly affect your overall performance.
The enjoyment of the sport can come from the relationship between the participant and their coach. A constructive coach can make such the difference to allow the athletes to achieve the highest possible performance level. The motivation levels of the athlete will also be tremendously high when they can trust and see that the coach has good intentions for them, and for a participant, one of your main priorities is making them proud and thanking them for their time and effort they spend with you. Disappointingly, not all coaches have the best interest for you. A number of coaches believe that aggression and violence will make the participant more scared to mess up and help their performance levels – this theory is a myth – and in actual fact this deflects woman for achieving the highest possible level. Kaitlyn Ohashia; American former Woman’s Artistic gymnast, spoke openly on the abuse she faced during her time. She broadcasted, that she adored going to the gym as a young child, as soon as an “elite atmosphere” kicked in, her joy and passion was replaced with terror. “I was told I looked like a pig”.
People will question, why don’t more woman talk about there experiences? This is easier said than done. Mckayla Maroney, Woman’s Artistic gymnast was faced with a $100,000 fine for speaking up about her sexual assault and abuse. For the reason that she signed a non-disclosure agreement, agreeing to stay silent about the abuse she encountered. Thus, highlighting she couldn’t speak confidential information or consequences would be charged. As we gather our thoughts, we acknowledge that actually the amount of money given to her in return, was not worth the constant torture of 6 hours a day, 5 days a week. Females, knowing this will not join sport or indeed talk about the abuse they are given, as they are just forced to keep quiet as if they try and speak out they will immediately be taken to court. Many females across the world were moved and touched by Mckayla’s story and wanted to help. Chrissy Teighan, a television host, was disgusted of the idea of Mckayla staying silent for such a mentally and physically damaging act. Her generosity was as pure as the sea as she reached out and offered to pay the $100,000 fine so she could tell exactly what she experienced. This just goes to show, the woman empowerment is extraordinary within our society and this act has now created movements and protests to close this gap of women being alienated and treated differently due to their gender. As time passed when the tweet went viral, stars of NBC’s offered to chip in as well suggesting how touched and affected they were. This is now making mainstream media television and showing coaches that the sort of behaviour is not acceptable.
Upon exploring the situation from multiple perspectives, this essay has provided convincing examples of why gender equality in sports is important and how inequality still exists and needs to be acted on. I believe these points illustrate how essential and important sport can be to mental health, physical health and human relationships. We must educate the people who do believe men are better in sports, as we have evolved as a society and believe more people need to act upon to make these changes happen sooner and quicker.
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