Sexism still rife in the sports industry

Think outdated and offensive views on women are a thing of past? Think again. Our research has shown that the UK are less inclined to watch female sporting events, when asked why, the responses were truly astonishing.

I am less likely to watch women play sport because…

  • It's bad enough having women commentators never mind players.
  • It’s poor quality, they’re not as skilled, it's like watching kids play.
  • I find them slow, weak and boring.
  • I personally think it’s not natural for a woman to play these types of sports
  • They dress inappropriately
  • I only watch sexy women.

Shockingly, many of the above statements were made by women.

With International Women’s Day just around the corner, Insure4Sport have carried out a survey of 2,000 people nationwide to find out their attitudes and beliefs on women in sport.

Whilst almost 3/4 of respondents recognised there is inequality in sports, the results of the survey are startling.

  • 40% of respondents do not believe women’s sports should get equal TV coverage to men’s sports.
  • Over a third do not agree the opinions of female sports commentators and pundits are as valid as those of their male counterparts.
  • Nearly a third of women admitted they prefer to watch men play sport over women.
  • Only 19% of respondents in this age bracket think women have the potential to be better than men at most sports, compared to 44% of respondents aged 16 to 24.

Responders’ viewing habits also showed a significant bias towards watching men’s sports rather than women’s sports:

  • Out of the 22 sports which respondents were questioned on, volleyball and hockey were the only two where respondents were more likely to watch the women’s game.
  • 38% would watch the men’s football world cup every time, compared to just 12% who would watch the women’s equivalent.
  • Similarly, for the rugby World Cup, almost half of respondents said they would choose to watch the men’s version, as opposed to just over a quarter who would choose to watch the women’s.

Interestingly when asked why they watch less women’s sports, respondents recognised that the lack of TV and media coverage plays a major role, with 1 in 4 stating this as their reason.

Whilst many of the beliefs expressed showed a clear difference in opinion between genders, none was more striking than the difference around the idea that ‘women are inferior at sport’ – 18% of men gave this as their reason, compared to just 6% of women.

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