On My Soapbox About….Women & Sport

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On My Soapbox About….Women & Sport

Joe’s been having a TV – fest watching the Commonwealth Games and he commented that he has watched a much more diverse range of sports, thanks to this and the 2012 Olympics.

He was surprised to find himself watching the women’s Hockey & Netball this week and enjoying both, which he observed were technical and fast moving. This didn’t come as a surprise to me, even at school level it was the rufty-tufty girls who excelled at these games, although I was a little taken aback that a bloke would actually admit to this (even my metro-sexual hubby!)

It did make me hark back to our first two seasons in New Zealand (1990 & 1991), where the regional championships for both these sports were televised at off-peak times. I thought this was a fantastic idea, much better than endless soap operas. It’s a great way to encourage young women to stay active once they leave school, which is often when interest lapses. I’ve got nothing against Corrie or East-enders, but why do we have to watch this format on every channel, every day and then have an omnibus on at weekends? Interesting to note that New Zealand were the Netball silver medallists at the Commonwealth Games……

So much of sport is about human emotion and triumph over adversity who needs yet another second rate drama or set up ‘reality’ scenario when we can be watching the real thing? (#Kate Walsh, #Lyndsey Sharp, #Jo Pavey,

I’ve never played Soccer or Rugby but having a grounding in Netball & Hockey made it a great deal easier to relate to the action (which no doubt is exactly why so many blokes poo-pooh them, but do we always have to pander to their idea of what is exciting in sport?)

In an attempt to get more women interested and involved, these days we are occasionally allowed to watch women’s Soccer and Rugby on TV but why,  when we already had some perfectly good action packed spectator sports of our own? To me, it just gives the blokes another opportunity to patronise as they watch what they consider our feeble attempts to join in their games. I have every confidence that the skill level of the ladies versions will pick up (it already has) as interest increases but why is this deemed necessary to stimulate national interest?

Hockey is a men’s game too and Ice Hockey has to be the most testosterone filled sport on the planet, so why isn’t the women’s game given more credibility? And as Joe observed, Netball is not so different to Basketball, it has all of the pace and skill, it just requires our men-folk to get their heads round the rules.

So come on TV-Programmers, variety is the spice of life, let’s see what else is out there!!

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