This is 2020. Wake up! Everyone's promoting equality. Yet this equality we seem to strongly fight for is still not found in sports, why is that? What is stopping equality from taking over sports?


Physical ability of athletes is the strongest argument brought out when this topic is discussed as “the gap between males and females is wide.” And women are seen uncapable of close it. for example, the top women athletes for 100m sprint are jogging along 10% behind their male counterparts and many argue that this would make the race unfair as men have a larger advantage to winning.

However, many seem to forget that the cause of this large gap is due to the fact that women in sport are funded less than men. A BBC study shows that 30% of sports reward men more highly than women in prize money. The lack of even funding puts men to a further advantage as they are capable to now invest in better training facilities which will enhance their athletic physicality. 


Also, some sports don’t even require physical prowess. For example, motor racing, chess and shooting are all sports which don’t require physical capability as much as lets say football, but still women aren’t shown to be able to copete against men in them. By not allowing women to compete in chess against men is like saying they aren’t mentally capable to compete against men, that they are dumber. So by this our society scorns the quality we are battling for.


Many ignore that the equality and fairness we strive for in sports is not going to come overnight, but that doesn’t excuse the large gap still present in funding as the lack of such support hinders the progress of equality in sports.


Media coverage is also lacking in the effort to push equality in sports further as more commercialisation groups and companies seem to be more attracted to and more reliant on men’s sport as they have a higher viewing rating. It seems that the idea of women competing with men would cause the games to be less exciting lowering viewing ratings.  

However, speaking to BBC sports UK Minister for Sport Helen Grant said "There is a gap, it needs to be closed but it's not going to happen overnight. We do know that women's sport is very exciting, we know it can draw really big audiences.’ 

Along the side of that a research project by Neilson Sports found that 51% of male fans are interested in watching women in sport. They said they find it ‘family orientated, progressive and inspiring,’ so there is an appetite for mixed gender sports in the market. 


Overtime if effort is put in, women would be able to level the playing field and compete fairly with men. Allowing women to compete against or with men in sport would be the best step forward in the aim to stop gender discrimination as well as prejudice.


Reem Ababtain.