Equal Rights for Female Athletes | Teen Ink

Equal Rights for Female Athletes

June 27, 2008
By Hannah Smith, Ardsley, NY

Right now, in Iraq there are American troops who are risking their lives for their country. In those lines of troops, men and women stand side by side, fighting and dying for this country. While this is going on, at home there are women who are unable to stand side by side with men and play a sport. This is unjust: women being allowed to die for their country side by side with men, but unable to play side by side with men in sports events. Having equal rights in selective places isn’t enough: everyone is supposed to have equal rights everywhere, so girls should be allowed to play on boy’s sports teams.

Some people do not want girls to play on boys sports teams, because they feel that if the girls play with the boys, they will get hurt. This hasn’t been proven, because girls have not been given the chance to play with boys. Also, girls get hurt anyway, even when they are playing with just girls. There have been studies conducted in military basic training, in one large study it was shown that, women are both more frequently injured, and are tougher. “It takes a bigger injury to knock them out of the service. The men, by comparison, are wimps; they leave with more minor ailments” (Sokolove 76), thus showing that the women won’t be afraid to go play with the boys, even if it means getting knocked around a bit.

There are also benefits to having girls and boys on the same team, besides the fun aspect. Both the girls and boys learn lessons from it. The girls learn to be more competitive, and the boys learn to be more cooperative (Tharp 52). Also, when girls play with boys, they usually learn a lot. Gen King, a college athlete, said that, “Playing seven years with boys ‘sharpened my skills’” (52). If she hadn’t played with the boys and improved her skills, she might not have gotten to the college level and it is probably the same for many other female athletes. At the moment boys and girls are playing sports on separate teams. One sports team is less expensive than two. Boys and girls playing together on teams would be less expensive, because it would be one coed team instead of two separate teams.

When girls go out for a girl’s team, they don’t get cut because of anything except for not having adequate skills. This should be the same when going out for a boy’s team.
The decision for teams shouldn’t be sex; it should be skill. Any girl should be allowed on any team if she has the necessary skills. There are girls at the moment who don’t find enough competition playing with girls, so they should have no problem transferring to a boy’s league. Also, if girls received the same training as boys, there would be no question of their capability in playing with the boys, because they would have the same skills, because they had the same training, because everyone is meant to have equal rights.

It isn’t right that girls aren’t allowed to play with boys; everyone is supposed to have equal rights. For years there were women who worked so hard to achieve equality, which we now supposedly have, yet we can’t even play on sports teams with men. What is going on is technically not even allowed in schools: “Title IX requires schools to take a series of steps to ensure equal opportunities for all student athletes” (Richey 2). After 36 years of being in action, you would think that by now there would be equality, but apparently not. And it definitely doesn’t have to do with a lack of interest from the girls, because when Title IX first came about, there were only about 300,000 girls participating in high-school sports, where as now there are about three million (Sokolove 60). So I’m sure that there would be even more willing to play if they could play with the boys.

Women have made so much progress in recent years. If women continue to progress, they could accomplish many more great things. Since they are supposed to have equal rights, this would be just another step to accomplish this so-called equality.


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This article has 15 comments.


Giannis said...
on Feb. 9 at 5:20 pm
Giannis, Phoneix, Arizona
0 articles 0 photos 1 comment
Ok. Lets get something straight here. Women and girls need more attention and equality in life and sports. But we're talking about sports here. First of all the WNBA and NBA. The peolpe that beleive that women should be able to play in the NBA, I'm sorry but no. I used to agree but now I don't. When I was talking to my friends they started explaining the game will be boring because the guys will prob have to go easy on most of the girls, cuz if they don't seriously the girls will probably ether killed or serouisly injured. Now do I think that the women should be paid attention more in the WNBA? Yes, Yes, I do. Ppl need to stop doing this thing boys and or men are strong than women or girls. BS. A lot of girls are ether the same or even stronger. Me being a girl, I've arm wrestled many of my guy friends and beat them multiple times. And when ever I challenge my guy friends to a race or something they say no. I ask why? And they say cuz you'll beat me. My other guy friend asked me to do one one bball. I said no. He said cuz you know I'm going to beat you? I laughed and said no cuz I'm going to beat you. His reply yea right. So I gave in and played. We played by one points. I beat him 15 to 5. So ppl stop discrimating girls/women in sports.

Jabb said...
on May. 1 2017 at 6:44 pm
Please look up the statistics relative to male and female combat fatalaties and While you're at it, also look up the Australian women's soccer team which lost to a group of 15-year-old boys. Men and women are different, we are a sexually dimorphic species. This whole girl power thing works out fine until a girl gets hit by a testosterone laden boy. The girl gets hurt, the boy gets abused for hitting a girl, and it's a losing situation all around. You can't argue or change biology.

Anonymous said...
on Oct. 20 2016 at 9:52 am
Does anybody know when this was published?

Loly pop said...
on Oct. 19 2016 at 10:03 am
I was thought feminism was the best movement in our country. I am a feminist men need to stop thinking women are baby machines because they are not there is so much more we can do.

Anonymous said...
on Apr. 27 2016 at 10:28 pm
I've seen issues with boys joining girl's teams and boys joining girl's teams. This is so controversial, and I think girls should be able to play; as well as boys playing on girl's teams. For example: I do know boys who are cheerleaders and girls who play football. No one has told them they couldn't... So the question is, why is it that people can't accept what other people want to do? If they don't agree, then they don't agree, but it's an issue for me because people I know don't seem to agree that a boy can be a cheerleader. They can accept a girl playing football but they wont accept the fact that a boy might want to be on a cheer squad? How does that even work out? They're basically being hypocrites, and it irritates me just thinking about it.

Mcsassy said...
on Apr. 25 2016 at 7:46 pm
umm well men were and (most likely) always be the dominate sex well until recently when woman started to take a stand you might think well woman have been for a long time now well think about how long ago were the kings of well anything the women had practically no say in history

sassymc said...
on Apr. 25 2016 at 7:38 pm
uh ya it kinda is

Keke123 said...
on Apr. 14 2016 at 5:02 pm
AMEN!That was the BEST article I have ever read, and it was exactly what I was looking for

Jaycie said...
on May. 20 2015 at 11:13 pm
Very nice article, just what i was looking for!

on Apr. 6 2015 at 11:33 am
preach sistaa

GUEST said...
on Feb. 10 2015 at 9:11 am
yall need to calm down cuz its not that serious. soooo...

Argumentor said...
on Mar. 27 2014 at 7:42 pm
I have to actually disagree with verobica and agree with Kevin because I see there is nothing bad about a girls team having boys in it. But on the other hand what prevents girls from being on boys teams? If you say that we kick ass, do you actually believe woman kick ass, i say yes but guys are not wimps like in the artlicle. There i went for both sides but I am still a girl so yup... Bye

emm1153486 said...
on Feb. 16 2014 at 5:09 pm
I agree with veronica i'm doing a school project for women being allowed to play on boys teams,you do not see articles about boys trying to get on these teams either.

veronica2345 said...
on Sep. 20 2013 at 2:56 pm
Well then make an article about it because apperantly you want to join volleyball cheerleading -.-

kevin said...
on Feb. 1 2013 at 2:08 am
Hannah, I think your article would be more up to date if it was "Equal Rights for Male Athletes"  Unless I'm missing something here, why do I only hear stories about a girl that is good enough to play on the football team or boy's wrestling team and some school district allows her to?  But I don't hear about boy's being allowed and encouraged to play on the girl's volleyball team or girl's field hockey team.  If anything the boy's seem to be the ones that are denied the opportunity to play on the opposite sex team.  So I ask you the question, what scenario do you hear more about?  What do you think about boy's playing on the girls volley ball team? If there a 10 spots on the squad and the ten best players are boy's, would you be o.k. with the "girls volleyball team" being 100% boy's?  You referenced a military study that implies "women are tougher then men, and in fact men are wimps" Do you really believe that?  If that is true why are women not dominating Mixed Martial Arts sports, Boxing and College Wrestlng? If the military truly beleives women are the "tougher" of the sexes, you bettor beleive women would be on the front lines tomorrow "kicking ass".   


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