Image retrieved from http://www.stylist.co.uk/people/foul-play-why-is-there-sexism-in-sport
Being an athlete is an amazing and rewarding experience. Athletics provide physical and mental rewards, but athletics also provides people with a passion, hobby, or even a career. I am an athlete myself. I danced for a majority of my life and I played multiple other sports as well. Being an athlete keeps me grounded, and it provides me with an escape from the stresses of life. When I train, all I think about is myself in the present moment. I flush out the rest of the world and am in the zone. It is an amazing feeling. Being an athlete has also taught me many important lessons, such as hard work, time management, and team work. Being an athlete is a defining characteristic of who I am and I cannot imagine my life if I was not one. Unfortunately, women who are professional athletes do not receive a major benefit they deserve: equality. For example, sports are highly covered on television and in the media, but “only 7% of all sports coverage is of women’s sport” (“Sexism in Sport”), and “only 0.4% of all commercial investment is into women’s sport” (“Sexism in Sport”). This lack of coverage and investments strips women of the support, money, popularity, and opportunity that men receive. Also, there is a large gap in the number of women coaching; “women make up only 18% of qualified coaches and 9% of senior coaches ” (“Sexism in Sport”). These low percentages, I believe, are due to gender-role beliefs that state that women should pursue safe, care-giving, and docile careers. Finally, wage discrimination is present in even athletic careers. This is present in the prizemoney for the 2014 FIFA Wold Cup, the women team earned fifteen million US dollars as opposed to the $576 million the men team received (Huff). Sports have been such a huge part of my life for many years. I cannot imagine facing this mistreatment in something that I love, especially if it was my career. Sadly, this is a reality many women face.