This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Female Athletes Scrutinized For Their Appearance

1767 words - 8 pages

Title IX was passed in 1972 and according to the Women’s Sports Foundation, as of 2011, women make up 38-42 percent of all sport and physical activity participants. Yet, research shows that women receive only 6-8 percent of the total sports coverage. A double standard is defined as a set of principles that allows greater freedom to one person or group than to another. ( In athletics, women are judged more on their appearances and their non-sport related activities, than their male counterparts who are judged primarily on their skills and performances. Female athletes are scrutinized based on their appearances more than their skills and athletic performances in the media.
...view middle of the document...

The researchers analyzed three TV sports networks in Los Angeles, KCBS, KNBS, and KABC. The study covered 236 sports news broadcasts that covered 17 hours of airtime. The research also covered three weeks of ESPN’s “Sports Center” that included 21 broadcasts. “The researchers found that: on the three network affiliates, men’s sports received 91 percent of the airtime, women’s sports got 6 percent and gender neutral topics got 2 percent.” (“Coverage of Women’s Sports at Standstill”) The study revealed that there was not major change in the quantity of women’s coverage, but the quality has changed. The researchers believed that the media coverage of female athletes is now more secretive, than it was in previous years. Women’s National Basketball Association has a summer season which is shorter than the National Basketball Association season. Because of this fewer games are televised and the players make less than their male counterparts. On magazine covers, male athletes are usually shown as skillful athletes, posing as athletes in their environment. On the other hand, female athletes are usually shown in provocative poses and over-sexualized, outside of their athletic environment. Donna Lopiano of Sports Management Resources comments that, “Girls also see a double standard in covering women’s sports. When male athletes receive media attention, such coverage is primarily focused on their skills and performance. When female athletes receive media attention, the media is much more likely to focus on their physical attractiveness or non-sport-related activities.”
According to, to feminize means “to make or become feminine” and feminine is defined as, “having qualities traditionally ascribed to women, as sensitivity or gentleness.” To be over-sexualized means to be over endowed with sexual characteristics. Both over-feminized and over-sexualized are accurate words used to describe female athletes in the media. Most female athletes are identified as “women first and athletes second.” Because of the over-sexualization of female athletes in the media such as Maria Sharapova, being portrayed as an over-feminine athlete is considered the only way the stay relevant in the sports world and in society. The most successful (well-known) female athletes in the media are often over-feminized and over-sexualized. Female athletes are just seen as over-sexualized women modeling clothes or equipment for a sports brand rather than skillful athletes. In magazine cover and internet articles, the term “athletes” is taken away and only the term “female” is left.
The way female athletes are portrayed in the media results in unattainable standards that viewers try to live by which also leads to lower self-esteem of female viewers. Female viewers are divided by arguing whether it is okay for women to be portrayed as sexual objects. This affects viewers by allowing them to only see the non-professional part of female athletes. The women portrayed in...

Find Another Essay On Female Athletes Scrutinized for their Appearance

Athletes and eating disorders Essay

1808 words - 7 pages thin (People Magazine 32). This is not to say that athletes in other sports don't have the same risk. In any sport where there is a need for physical activity and performance, in order to maintain their appearance, performance and required weight, athletes can develop Anorexia or Bulimia Nervosa.So, why do athletes get an eating disorder? Some athletes start an eating disorder because of the idealization of thinness in our society (What is Healthy

Athlete's With Eating Disorders Essay

1810 words - 7 pages thin (People Magazine 32). This is not to say that athletes in other sports don't have the same risk. In any sport where there is a need for physical activity and performance, in order to maintain their appearance, performance and required weight, athletes can develop Anorexia or Bulimia Nervosa. So, why do athletes get an eating disorder? Some athletes start an eating disorder because of the idealization of thinness in our society (What is

Gender Discrimination in the Stadium

1565 words - 7 pages coaches for the women’s basketball championship and the coaches for the men’s basketball championship coach are noticeable throughout the championship. The coaches for the female athletes displayed a soft and reassuring attitude while the coaches for the male athletes displayed a firm and assertive attitude. The coaches for the female and male athletes displayed their attitudes through language and kinesics or nonverbal communication (1, 2) The

Masculinity and Feminily in Sports

779 words - 3 pages stereotypes are still prevalent even today. While women athletes are gaining more and more recognition for their physical abilities and strength, male athletes who wish to enter into traditionally female sports suffer the same difficulty women experienced gaining recognition for their abilities. As shown in the movie Pumping Iron II, the female bodybuilder Bev was subject to criticism of her crossing the gender boundary by developing strong, large, and

Media, Sexualisation and Female Tennis

1413 words - 6 pages be supporting the more fuckable #lisicki, #Bartoli looks like your stereotypical dyke” support the idea that appearance on the court is of upmost significance. In Conclusion the pragmatic assumption can be made that female tennis is highly sexualised by the media, and athletes are often being placed on a pedestal due to their stimulating appearance not their sporting achievements. Ashley Harkleroad represents the media’s “ideal” athlete, while

Should College Athletes Be Paid?

1600 words - 6 pages NCAA generated over $845 million last year and following the NCAA agreement the athletes are not allowed to get pay It sounds like a corporation who generate $845 million and they don’t have to pay their employees. The perfect model business (“Why College”). The question should college athletes be paid has been in the sport scene for several years, people have different points of view, solutions, and arguments about this topic. Analyzing the evident

The Three Elements of the Female Athlete Triad

2676 words - 11 pages ) reports in Clinics in Sports Medicine that a study of college athletes found 32% practiced some form of pathogenic weight control behavior, and 70% believed their behavior was harmless. A study by Rush, Joy, Bainbridge, and Macintyre (1997) concluded that poor eating habits and characteristics of the Female Athlete Triad are common among dancers. In the study, a survey to identify risk factors for the triad was administered to experienced

“Transsexual and Transgender Policies in Sport”,

864 words - 3 pages were found to be genetically male. These women have what is called Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome (AIS). Their outer appearance is that of a woman, but genetically they are made up of 46 XY chromosomes, which marks them genetically as males. These female athletes are “born with relatively rare genetic abnormalities that affect development of the gonads”. they are naturally resistant to the strength-promoting qualities of testosterone. When

anabolic steroids

1129 words - 5 pages , which makes it possible to train harder and, in addition, improve strength and endurance. Some adolescents who are not athletes also take steroids to increase their strength and endurance and to “gain muscle mass and lose body fat,” which they believe improves personal appearance with less effort (Harrison and Kanayama 251). (Good) The use of steroids is mostly confined to males, regardless of them being athletes or non-athletes. Males usually more

Drug and Alcohol Use by Student Athletes

1373 words - 5 pages compared to half of the female athletes. The study by Tricker and Connolly (1997) examined the attitudes of athletes who were at risk for using steroids, amphetamines, cocaine, and marijuana. They found that seventeen percent of the athletes surveyed felt that marijuana use was an acceptable way to cope with the pressures of sport. Also the main reason for athletes abstaining from drug use was their fear of getting caught, rather than personal

Women sport

1368 words - 5 pages healthy to overwork their body as some athletes are expected to do. Many athletes attain such bad habits because of the image they try to live up to.Built to Win: The Female Athlete as Cultural Icon supports the views discussed in class. It expands the idea of gender inequity and how women have been oppressed for many years until after Title IX was passed. Women are now having more opportunities to play and enjoy sports because of this. Despite

Similar Essays

Student Athletes: Finding A Balance Essay

2681 words - 11 pages ) four stages of identity development based on the conflicts and commitments with a focus on female development. All three theories can be used as a framework to help explain athletic identity development, cognitive dissonance/role conflict, and social identity of student-athletes. The difficulties for many student-athletes occur when there is conflict between their identities versus confusion of roles. An example may include female athletes

Eating Disorders Among Female Athletes Essay

1145 words - 5 pages < .01); EDI and Parti.Lastly when comparing the means of both athletes and non-athletes for each test, it can be seen that there is a large difference. In this research report, it will be hypothesized that eating disorders are significant in female athletes and that there are important factors affecting health risks that are due to the eating disorder.IntroductionSome physically active females, particularly adolescents, may develop an energy

Inequity In Athletics Essay

916 words - 4 pages sports is the wage gap. When compared to men, female athletes have trouble receiving equal salaries and getting sponsorship deals. This factor makes it difficult for women to be noticed in their sport. To compare the salaries of female and male athletes, consider Maria Sharapova, “the world’s highest paid female athlete... who is on top for the ninth straight year with $29 million in earnings from prize money, endorsements, and appearance fees

Comparison Essay: Female Versus Male Athletes

1143 words - 5 pages every year (Lopiano, 2008). Lopiano (2008) mentions “televised WNBA games are played during a shortened summer season by players making 10-20 times less than their male counterparts”. When female athletes receive media coverage, it does not measure up to the amount male athletes receive. Sommers (2010) mentions “in the year 2009, the NBA receives 92.3 percent of the total attendance for pro basketball, while the WNBA got only 7.7 percent total