International Women’s Day 2018

This Girl Can advert. Bird's eye view of women in a sports hall.

Today is International Women’s Day, so I thought it would be relevant to ponder the role of women in sports. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you will know that I’m passionate about equality for women (and often share inspirational images from the ‘This Girl Can’ campaign… I love the campaign although I hate the slogan – surely it should be ‘this woman can’?!)

This Girl Can logo.

Did you know that the world’s first recorded female-only sporting event was the Heraean games in Athens in 776BC? However, women weren’t invited to take part in the Olympics until 1900. At the games, women were only allowed to take part in three events: golf, tennis and cricket.

In the 20th century, there were a number of ground-breaking female athletes, including Gertrude Ederle (an American women who was the first female to swim the Channel in 1926) and Alice Coachman (the first black woman to win a gold Olympic medal in 1948). However, it took until the 2012 Olympic Games for every team to include at least one female competitor.

Girls basketball team huddled together.

Further reading about women in sports

If you want to learn more about the role of women in sport, check out these links:

3 Responses

  1. I love Paula Radcliffe and Jo Pavey (and whole clatter of other inspirational female runners), but my fave female athlete has to be Jenny Murphy, Irish international rugby player. Fearless and savage tackler.

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