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Author Topic: Women have come a long way in sports but will they ever catch up ?  (Read 1565 times)

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Offline sheehan333

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I remember watching women's cricket for the 1st time as a young child in 1997 during the world cup here. It was totally boring with players lacking not only in strength and athleticism but also in skills. In 2013 as the World cup has once again being held here I am amazed to see the how the level has increased, the matches are far more interesting and entertaining. A team from the 1997 competition wont be able to compete with the ladies now. They are as skillfull as the male and their matches look like how 14-16 year old boys matches are, skilled players but not the strongest.

So to my question considering the rate women are improving will it be possible say within 50 more years for them to catch up to male standards in sports. If not all will there be some elite athletes/teams who will be able to compete at the top level with male sportspersons. For e.g. a women playing NBA or a mixed football (soccer)/cricket team. Females already have won mixed gender competition in ultra marathon and there are some studies which says that it is possible for women to beat men in endurance sports like long distance running and swimming. In my mind there are arguments both pro and contra so I would ask considering a long time horizon how would the battle of the sexes in sports will play out, Will women ever catch up ?


Offline Ronald_Frump

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"Ever" is a long time, so that's a definite yes. I think evolution and modern society is turning men more nerdy and geeky, while many women are becoming stronger and more physical, by comparison.
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Offline jiminy

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There are sports that don't depend on physical fitness as much as others (Snooker, Darts, Motor Sport, etc) yet these sports are still dominated by men with only a few token females here & there.

I would have thought that females would break through in these kind of sports first. It mainly just comes down to participation numbers. If as many women took these kind of sports as seriously as men, I think it would be 50/50.

Offline jiminy

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Women in Motor Sport is quite an interesting subject.

There have been plenty of women over the years that have proven themselves in this field, winning races against men. They say women are safer drivers on the road, but plenty of women today are proving to be too quick for the boys on the track too.

Women like Danica Patrick. Indycar race winner. Also won 3 pole positions and many top 3 finishes (including 3rd at the Indy 500). Arguably the best female racing driver today.



Simona de Silvestro. Won 5 races in Toyota Atlantic championship. Now races competitively in Indycar with a best finish of 4th. Could potentially make F1.



Katherine Legge. Won 3 races in Toyota Atlantic. Now races in Indycar.



Natacha Gachnang. Won races in Spanish F3 championship and fought for the overall championship. Raced in F2 and FIA GT series. Career damaged by an accident back in 2010, where she sustained a leg injury.



Sarah Moore. In 2009, age 15 she won the Ginetta Jr. Championship and was awarded Autosport Magazine's "Young Driver of the Year".



Louise Richardson. Also a race winner in the Ginetta series.




In the past, women such as Michelle Mouton, Lella Lombardi and Desire Wilson amongst others have enjoyed success at various levels, but whereas before it was a surprise to see a woman racing, it's now more of a surprise to look at a racing series and not see a single woman competing. As participation numbers increase, women are clearly becoming more competitive across the board and I feel it's only a matter of time before we see genuine front-running female F1 drivers.

Williams' F1 development driver Susie Wolff will be the first of the team's drivers to drive their 2013 car.

 http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/21237085

Quote
The 30-year-old said: "I'm showing that women can play a role at the top level of motorsport."

---

Technical director Mike Coughlan added: "Susie has proved herself to be a valuable addition to our driver roster and her feedback during simulator sessions is second to none."

« Last Edit: 03-Feb-13, 09:45 PM by jiminy »

Offline sleepinbin

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probably not, tbqh. women closed the gap rapidly when first given wide access to sports but are now relatively plateauing. men also keep improving as well... ultimately the best men will always be on average more physically gifted than the best women. not that that means anything beyond the realm of running fast and jumping high etc, but i don't see that changing even within 50 years. you *might* get the exceptionally talented outlier, but it will never be a regular occurrence in 99% of sports.
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Offline Matey

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Came across this article:

www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/08/we-thought-female-athletes-were-catching-up-to-men-but-theyre-not/260927/

Interesting to see that in most sports, women's world records are about 90 percent of the men's world record, and this 0.9 coefficient seems pretty consistent across the field and throughout the past few decades. so it doesn't look like the gap is closing.

Frankly, knowing that top females are only 10% behind top males, and that I would barely rank myself as an average male, is good enough for me :)

The article also mentions the fact women already caught up with men, of yesterday anyway :d Women today, for example, swim as fast as men did forty years ago..

Offline Mr Businessman

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No.

I'm sorry but I think that is the HONEST truth. Yes, a lot of men are becoming weaker, but alot are also becoming stronger.
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Offline Ronald_Frump

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Whilst the gap amongst elite athletes remains the same, I think more women are likely to be health-conscious than men. This would include diet and exercise. I therefore conclude Miss Average is closing the gap on Mr Average.
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Offline twq87

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nope.

Offline Mr Businessman

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Whilst the gap amongst elite athletes remains the same, I think more women are likely to be health-conscious than men. This would include diet and exercise. I therefore conclude Miss Average is closing the gap on Mr Average.


Do note that a-lot of men are into exercise these days, just like women, that doesn't necessarily mean that women are fitter. The average man is much stronger than the average women, an athletic woman would beat the average man, however average men have higher bone-density and muscle-mass in comparison to women, while also being much taller. Men will continue to get bigger and stronger, a-lot of women these days are fat and have bad diets, just like men.

Do note that like the average man, average women do have a-lot of office jobs these days.
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Offline Mr Businessman

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I remember watching women's cricket for the 1st time as a young child in 1997 during the world cup here. It was totally boring with players lacking not only in strength and athleticism but also in skills. In 2013 as the World cup has once again being held here I am amazed to see the how the level has increased, the matches are far more interesting and entertaining. A team from the 1997 competition wont be able to compete with the ladies now. They are as skillfull as the male and their matches look like how 14-16 year old boys matches are, skilled players but not the strongest.

So to my question considering the rate women are improving will it be possible say within 50 more years for them to catch up to male standards in sports. If not all will there be some elite athletes/teams who will be able to compete at the top level with male sportspersons. For e.g. a women playing NBA or a mixed football (soccer)/cricket team. Females already have won mixed gender competition in ultra marathon and there are some studies which says that it is possible for women to beat men in endurance sports like long distance running and swimming. In my mind there are arguments both pro and contra so I would ask considering a long time horizon how would the battle of the sexes in sports will play out, Will women ever catch up ?


Here in England, women are NOWHERE near mean in Football (you'd call it Soccer). It's not even close, at all. Men just play at a much better level, maybe in mixed judo they can catch up. But not in something like Soccer, Rugby or even Boxing.

They won't catch up in NBA either, maybe Tennis though. While Serena Williams is very good at Tennis, she isn't at the level of Andy Murray or Nadal.
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Offline gh122

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Maybe, women sports have taken an undeniable leap forward, just look how the lingerie football league has changed to the legends football league while dumping the bikini's for real gear. The very fact that their trying to disassociate themselves from the image of models prancing around in underwear shows ow far society's come, and how  far it has yet to go.
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