Double Standards For Female Athletes' Appearance

. Tuesday, July 15, 2008
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I came across a post today on the Smart Like Me blog about the double standards of women’s sports uniforms in which she made a brief comment about the WNBA:

Without further editorializing on the seeming requirement that female athlete’s garb be “sexy” (save for those nasty lesbian WNBA players, snark), I read these 2 posts today..
The brief comment highlights an issue that Patricia Nell Warren wrote about in a previous article for the Women’s Sports Foundation:
Different sports have responded in different ways to LGBT athletes and coaches coming out. In the sports based on individual performance, there has been less resistance to change and less open homophobia. But many team sports have a long way to go before we will be happy with their attitudes and practices!
But while the "garb" of female basketball players isn’t expected to be sexy, more and more the women are. As one of the quoted blogs (Uncensored Feminista) writes:
It’s as if they need to show their sexiness and their femininity in order to be recognized for the players that they are. This sounds a lot to me like what’s happening with the WNBA and how the women are being sent to charm school. I also wanted to mention that we don’t see male athletes in their tighty whities to promote themselves. Granted Michael Jordon has the Hanes endorsements but have you ever seen an ad of him in underware or half naked? Have you ever seen him wearing less clothing than what he would wear on the court? Why do women have to expose themselves in bikinis and lingerie, which is NOT something they should be seen in public in period, not like the article suggests.
Although some people may complain that continuing to point this stuff out is just getting “old”, the fact that it continues to happen despite repeated claims of “progress” make it worth calling attention to.

Great food for thought in all of those posts.

Relevant Links:

Link to Warren's previous article can be found here: