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Bringing more women into sport

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Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson is to chair a new commission to increase women's participation in sport and address the problems they face.

Although she says that many women in sport know the issues that are out there, to have all the information pulled together means there is a real chance of tackling some of the inequalities.

One of the main aims is to open up the sporting career path for women, and encourage women with skills to be the best that they can.

The commmission will also feature Dame Kelly Holmes and Millwall Executive Deputy Chairman Heather Rabbatts.

What would you like to see the commission achieving?

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posted Jul 24, 2008

Sorry to blow a bubble but sport needs women about as badly as a fish needs a bicycle. Same applies to men.

Sport needs participants and gender has nothing to do with that. Supporting women's sport is all and well but in the end it's a question of interest. If women in general are not interested in participating in sport at any level then all the money, TV coverage and quotas in the world are not going to matter.

The resources have to focus on getting women interested in sport in the first place and, no less important, get the women themselves to take responsibility for women's sport. They have to be willing to drive their own sport forward. I've seen women's football in three clubs in two different countries die simply because the men that had driven the clubs forward wanted to focus on the men's game and no woman was willing to take over the day to day running.

If the women themselves don't want to drive women's sport - why should the men care in the least?

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posted Jul 24, 2008

So Y2J thinks Paula Radcliffe is a quitter. The outstanding thing about Paula's marathon career is that she has won every marathon she has entered apart from the Olympics in 2004. This is an outstanding record in an event where the slightest injury or bit of poor health seriously affects performance. It's a measure of her success that we were so surprised with what went on in Athens. Concerning the gender debate, in some years Paula has been the fastest Brit (male or female) over the marathon distance.

If you still think she is a quitter, I suggest you look at the closing stages of Paula's two New York marathon victories where she has been tested head to head and come out on top. Clearly such performances are very easy so I look forward to seeing Y2J match them in the coming months!!

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posted Jul 24, 2008

So when are we going to see a campaign for funding to get men into netball?

It is far EASIER for women in most cases. Danica Patrick will earn far more money than most of her male coubterarts even if she never wins a championship.

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comment by samshe (U11287103)

posted Jul 24, 2008

So Y2J thinks Paula Radcliffe is a quitter.


Sorry to bust your bubble, but SHE IS A QUITTER. I say this because SHE QUIT, therefore she is a quitter.

I appreciate her ability, she is arguably the top female long distance runner in the world, no mean feet. However can you imagine a footballer competing in the worlds most prestigous event in his sport (the World Cup Final), just stopping and saying "Sod this for a laugh, I'm knackered? Do you think he would get any sympathy from the public??? NO!!!

The only reason that Paula got sympathy is because she is a woman. I even felt sorry for her, it's horrible to see a woman cry, any man will tell you that.

Onto the broader subject, women will never be as good, or as involved in sport as men. That is because the male body is physically stronger, fitter and is able to withstand higher strain and pressure than a female body. This is fact.
Woman play sport at a handicap, they are banded together because they are not as good as men. In qualifying for the Olympic games, a female athlete will have a lower target time then a male athlete. This is because it is recognised that women are not as good as men.

If women want equal money, coverage etc, then they need to be of equal ability.

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posted Jul 25, 2008

However can you imagine a footballer competing in the worlds most prestigous event in his sport (the World Cup Final), just stopping and saying "Sod this for a laugh...

Isn't this exactly what happened in the the World Cup Final 2006? Zidane decided he had had enough, head butted an opponent (knowing he would be sent off) and then saw his side lose. I seem to recall he was welcomed home by the French president.

If you want to come closer to home we can consider the case of Rio Ferdinand who deliberately missed a drugs test, was suspended for seven or eight months but was kept on by Man Utd with full pay. A lot of football fans complained he had been harshly treated but, in any other sport, the offence he had committed would have resulted in a two year ban. This player is now considered a possible England captain.

On this basis, ffotball fans appear to be especially forgiving of players failings.

Coming back to the main point, I don't disagree that men are stronger than women. However, sport is about competition and as I said above there was just as much pleasure watching Vicky Pendlton win her world titles earlier this year as seeing Chris Hoy achieve the same feat.

Nicole Cooke's dad has written on the cycling board about the effort required to get to the top in women's cycling compared with the men. He obviously has more knoweldge about this than I do but, from memory, his suggestion was that women's cycling was easier than the equivalent male races in the lower echelons of the sport. However at the elite level his view was that the competition was just as fierce and required the same level of committment to training and preparation. Aren't Tanni Grey Thompson's efforts aimed at increasing the female participation in the lower levels of sport thus increasing the standard of competition? If that's the case, shouldn't it be encouraged?

One way of doing that is to celebrate female success in sport thus providing good role models. There are plenty examples in the UK (see my earlier post).

I am lucky in that my two daughters love their sport (football, cross country running and horse riding) as do many of their friends. However there is little encouragement from their all girl school which does not have dedicated playing fields and have recently built over the tennis courts. Meanwhile at the boy's school down the road, sport is celebrated.

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posted Jul 26, 2008

comment by Czechmate (U1749152)
posted 4 Days Ago

"I won't be buying into womens sport just to feel more politically correct."

I agree. The womens world cup was a joke the qulity on display was below mens sunday league. And the worst thing is every time one of the players did someting remotly right as in control a pass everyone would go wooooo did you see what she did that is as good as any man. I'm not against women sports I just don't watch them becuase they are mostly rubbish.

Believe me, I referee sunday league football and I've seen players a lot worse than what was on display at the women's world cup. I've also seen play in the girls' matches that I've refereed that would put some Premiership players to shame- and that was at U15 level.

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comment by samshe (U11287103)

posted Jul 28, 2008


Isn't this exactly what happened in the the World Cup Final 2006? Zidane decided he had had enough, head butted an opponent (knowing he would be sent off) and then saw his side lose. I seem to recall he was welcomed home by the French president.

This point is ludicrous!!! To say that Zidane reacted that way on purpose and with a clear mind and focused judgement just so he wouldnt have to complete the game is laughable. Though wrong he actions were a spur of the moment thing, it happened in a second. Who here hasnt done something stupid in the heat of the moment.


If you want to come closer to home we can consider the case of Rio Ferdinand who deliberately missed a drugs test, was suspended for seven or eight months but was kept on by Man Utd with full pay. A lot of football fans complained he had been harshly treated but, in any other sport, the offence he had committed would have resulted in a two year ban. This player is now considered a possible England captain.

Again, this is a pathetic point. Despite being highly libellous (moderators really should have taken this one down), there is NO evidence that Rio did this deliberately. Also I think you will find that an athlete gets a two year ban for FAILING a drugs test. If they miss one and it is their first offence, little action is taken.

On this basis, ffotball fans appear to be especially forgiving of players failings.

Coming back to the main point, I don't disagree that men are stronger than women. However, sport is about competition and as I said above there was just as much pleasure watching Vicky Pendlton win her world titles earlier this year as seeing Chris Hoy achieve the same feat.

True sport is about5 competing. However people want to see the worlds best competing, not people put in a competition that is inaccessible to the better athletes. Consider football or any other sport that has a tiered league system. People want to watch the Premier League simply becase the exponants of that league posses a far higher degree of skil than the lower leagues. Just like men posses a far higher degree of skill in most sports than women. Any football fan will tell tyou the the English Championship is far more competitive than the Premier League, yet which owuld most rather watch?

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posted Jul 30, 2008

If people wanted to watch women's football/rugby etc then they would go and watch it.

It is nothing to do with equality. Sport is about providing entertainment and people will pay to watch that entertainment.

Top Women footballers will never earn anywhere close to what the top male footballers earn. If they had the same level of skill in football then i could understand it, but watching women's football is probably at a level around non-league in the male version.

Wimbledon is different as more people will pay to watch the women play therefore they should be paid accordingly (however the male version is still the gender in which people want to watch)

I do however agree that there needs to be more things in place to help women's sport move forward. One example was when Charlton got relegated from the Premier League and had to stop their women's team because of the reduced income of the male side.

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posted Jul 31, 2008

Sam

Zidane was one of the most experienced players on the pitch in that World Cup Final. You would expect someone of that calibre should have had more discipline even in the heat of the moment.

Regarding Rio Ferdinand, I don't believe I was libellous. According to the reports at the time, Rio was told he had to attend a drugs test at the end of his training session. At the end of the session he left the ground without taking the test. In any other sport, avoiding a test in this manner counts as a drugs test failure. Hence the reason I said it would have attracted a two year ban.

Missing tests is what Ohurogou was guilty of. On threee occasions, she was not in the location she had told the testers she would be and hence missed the drugs tests. However, unlike Rio she was not aware there was a test to take. I accept it is a fine distinction and in the light if Victor Comte's statements should be tightened up on but that's the rules.

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posted Jul 14, 2009

I believe that greater coverage of womens sport will result in more interest and encourage both participation and live crowds. The womens ashes, despite them winning it, had hardly any coverage compared to the mens. This fact and many others motivated me to setup a petition re BBC sport bradcasting-http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/genderbiasbbc/. If you agree please sign it. Paul

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