Gender inequality in sports

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Annotated Bibliography

Lisec, John, and Mary G. McDonald. “Gender inequality in the new millennium: An analysis of WNBA representations in sport blogs.” Journal of Sports Media 7.2 (2012): 153-178.

Author John Lisec is a PhD student from the school of Kinesiology while Mary McDonald from the Miami University in Ohio. This journal gives a proper understanding about gender inequality and the reasons why certain people have specific issues perceptions concerning the issue. The writer talks about how gender inequality comes about, the way education experts have influenced the measures taken against global warming and how the people can be educated about the issue. The relevance of this book lies in how it provides insight into materials that can educate people about gender discrimination. The relevance of this book is critical to the understanding of gender inequality because of how it explains the aspects that influence the perception of people concerning gender inequality.

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Chalabaev, Aïna, et al. “The influence of sex stereotypes and gender roles on participation and performance in sport and exercise: Review and future directions.” Psychology of Sport and Exercise 14.2 (2013): 136-144.

Aina Chalabaev is a French writer from the Research Center for Sport and Movement, in the Paris West University Nanterre La Defense. In conjunction with other writers, she has given a very reliable article that explains how certain stereotypical beliefs affect the involvement of girls and women in sports. The above article is a credible source of information because of how it gives clear illustration as to the consequences of stereotypical beliefs in gender correlations. However, the above book was not incredibly reliable because it was somewhat concise. The source is critical to the research of understanding gender inequality and how the perception of people may increase the rate of gender discrimination in sports.

Dashper, Katherine. “Together, yet still not equal? Sex integration in equestrian sport.” Asia Pacific Journal of Health, Sport and Physical Education 3.3 (2012): 213-225.

Katherine Dashper works in Leeds Metropolitan University in the Carnegie faculty where she has amassed some quality knowledge concerning gender inequality. Katherine explains how different strides have been taken but still, women continue to be discriminated against. Writer Katherine goes on to explain about the poor sex integration in the American and European education system. At the same time, the book talks about the economic and political effects gender inequality to the society. The relevance of this journal in understanding gender inequality in school sports is in how it provides three effects of gender inequality in school sports.

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Messner, Michael. “Gender ideologies, youth sports, and the production of soft essentialism.” Sociology of Sport Journal 28.2 (2011): 151-170

Michael Messner is an affiliate of the University of Southern California where he lectures about sociology gender balance. In the article above, Michael discusses how specific ideologies concerning gender inequalities affect the involvement of girls in schooling sports. This source has given a clear evaluation as to the statistics regarding the rate of gender inequality in different schools across the state. The source above gives a short list of proposals as to what can be done stop gender discrimination in school sports. The relevance of this reference lies on how it gives insight about the figures of the rate of discrimination in different states across America and the recommendations of solving gender discrimination in sports.

Flake, Collin R., Mikaela J. Dufur, and Erin L. Moore. “Advantage men: The sex pay gap in professional tennis.” International Review for the Sociology of Sport 48.3 (2013): 366-376.

The authors above have presented a fascinating piece of literature that assists the readers in understanding how gender inequality in school sports not lies among the students but also the coaches. The book above talks about how men and women are paid differently yet they both do almost the same job. The relevance of this book is in how it provides insight as the way male coaches in tennis are paid more than the female one ones. This is a useful piece of information since some of the recommendations made are non-technical and very readable which means a reader gets a better understanding of ways of solving gender inequality.

Love, Adam, and Kimberly Kelly. “Equity or essentialism? US courts and the legitimation of girls’ teams in high school sport.” Gender & Society 25.2 (2011): 227-249.

In the book above, Adam Love and Kelly Kimberly have provided a clear example as to the law that seeks to solve gender inequality in school sports. The relevance of this book is in how it explains that Title IX, which is a law that was passed four decades ago, ensures that all schools encourage gender equality in all school activities. This source is insightful because it employs different sectors for references all through the book. The writing techniques of this book are seamless since it does not apply straightforward texts. The research paper will utilise this book to get critical information in regards to understanding gender inequality in the education system.

Gender inequality in sports

Thesis: Evidence from different social research projects conducted by institutions such as the United Nations show that women are indeed discriminated against in various activities that people engage in. More so, there has been a lot of reports, debates and discussions concerning gender inequality in sports, especially in high school. As such, this paper tends to present an argument showcasing how there is gender inequality in the field of sports, more so in schools using different factual materials and how the situation can be solved.

Introduction

Gender discrimination has existed in different societies across the globe for eons. In the various activities that people pertain in, women have always been treated differently in ways that only favor men. Over the years, research projects have shown how women are discriminated against in employment, education, career choices, among other fields (Lisec and Mary, 159). As such, the purpose of this research paper is to present an argument explaining the topic, gender inequality in sports, more so in schools.

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Gender inequality has remained a provocative subject across the world, especially the USA. Different Governmental and non-governmental organizations have been formed to assist the society to tackle gender discrimination in the various aspects of life and come up with a more balanced gender relations structure in the nation. Notwithstanding the field of sports, gender inequality is more evident in the day to day activities such as trading, church activities, and in this case sports (Chalabaev et al., 140). As such, people must be educated about the available facts concerning gender inequality in sports.

Discussion

It is entirely known that education experts in different schools across the world give more attention to male students than the female ones. As such, the boy-child is given more opportunities and chances of excelling in the different activities that exist in schools. Nonetheless, it is somewhat evident nowadays that girls and women are given more considerations as compared to the past (Dashper, 217). For instance, different research projects have shown that women are more likely to succeed than women. Women are more likely to have better school performances in their academics in comparison to boys.

Furthermore, gender inequality exists in school sports because boys are expected to perform better than girls in any sports activities (Messner, 163). There are several explanations as to the reasons that lead to gender discrimination against girls in sports. For instance, one of the common causes is that girls are meek in appearance thus the reason why girls are considered less confident than boys in many sports activities. This leads to boys are given more opportunities to engage in the school activities because of how they portray a lot of energy. Therefore, schools should implement policies that ensure the school staffs and the society at large is educated about the capabilities of both genders thus promoting equality between the two genders in sports.

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Also, there is a belief in different societies that boys engaging in sports is a sign of masculinity. As such, boys are always coerced into engaging in games while girls are shunned away from sports. As a result, gender inequality in school sports becomes rampant due to how the society associates sports as being an activity meant for boys only (Wagner, 7). This is seen in how there are numerous sports leagues, gambling sites for sports that are typically filled with men and there are more men who go to watch sports in the athletic fields in comparison to women. This shows how the struggle for equal gender relations among students in school sports is hard. However, it would be of great assistance to solving gender imbalance through encouraging girls to participate in such activities to ensure there is gender equality in all sports activities.

Research conducted by the National Women Law Center shows some statistics that are quite alarming concerning gender inequality in school sports. The information in the study above indicates that about 28% of public high schools have vast rates of gender inequalities concerning how both genders have access to sports. This means that nearly 4500 public schools in the USA have large gaps of gender equality in sports (Dworkin and Cheryl, 22). This shows that indeed gender discrimination in sports does exist and that the society ought to take the necessary steps to ensure the issue is handled. More so, studies have shown that the state of Georgia is the worst regarding gender inequalities in school sports. The federal state should intervene and come up with ways that will eradicate gender inequality in sports among public schools. For instance, the government can pass laws that push schools to adhere to gender equality policies and ensure the implement the punishments that come with breaking those particular laws.

Title IX is a policy that was passed some four decades ago which was to make schools across the USA ensure there is gender balance in all the school activities (Love and Kimberly, 234). However, different institutions across the nation have refused to comply with the policy thoroughly, and this is evident in the statistics presented above that prove how gender inequality in school sports is rampant. One of the senior counsels from the National Women Law Center by the name of Neena Chaudhry explained that the national government has never taken school funds away from any school that engaged in the malpractice of gender inequality. This was supposed to be one of the punishments to any school that showed any form gender discrimination. As mentioned earlier, these laws that govern gender equality among schools should be fully implemented to ensure that the administrations of public education facilities involve both genders in all their sports.

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One of the significant issues affecting the American society is racial discrimination. The minorities which include the African Americans, Mexicans, Asians, and other groups of people from different parts of the world continue to be social, politically, and economically oppressed. As such, gender inequality is more rampant in areas inhabited by the minority communities. This is because schools in these areas have a limited supply of resources required to provide students with the necessary materials for extracurricular activities (Burton, 161). Consequently, the few resources available for sports do not give the schools a chance to advocate for gender equality for school sports thus the existence of gender discrimination in such schools. Intrinsically, it would be beneficial to the fight against gender inequality if the governments provide funds and other resources to ensure both genders are involved in sports among minority groups in the USA.

Additionally, it is quite difficult to prove that a school is engaging in gender inequalities in school sports. Nevertheless, it also difficult to justify that there are female students who are just not interested in games. As such, one must not accuse an institution of gender discrimination without conducting a thorough investigation. Also, schools must motivate the female students to engage in sports activities to show they fully comply with Title IX. Regardless, there has been tangible proof to show that gender inequality is indeed present in many schools across the USA. For instance, there are cases where the number of girls in a school is more than that of boys, yet only 23% of the total students engaging in sports are girls.

Strides taken in eradicating gender inequality has some positive and negative results on both genders (Chalabaev et al., 140). For instance, when a fixed number of both sexes is placed regarding the number of boys and girls allowed to engage in individual sports, then students from both genders will have equal opportunities in sports. Female players will be able to participate in sports without having to experience some negative aspects that are associated with women currently. However, if a fixed number is placed in regards to the number of students allowed to engage in specific sports activities to achieve gender equality, then other students may be denied a chance to play.

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An example is a school that decides to pass a policy that a total number of 100 students are allowed to engage in tennis. Also, out of that 100, 50 must be females and the other 50 males. This may seem okay because it showcases gender equality. However, it may limit certain students from engaging in tennis because in the case where there are more than 50 male students interested in tennis, some will be denied the chance to play tennis all in the name of gender equality. As such, sociological experts should take caution when placing specific measures in the attempt of achieving gender equality in school sports (Lisec and Mary, 159).

Also, gender inequality in school sports may result in students getting unequal opportunities to further their education. This is because different sports activities come with rewards such as scholarships to the university or college. As a result, when a school gives limited opportunities to female students to engage in sports, then the chances of girls also furthering their education are narrowed because they are not given chances to win such rewards. For that reason, the federal and the states governments must put in place methods that will ensure students from both genders are well sorted out regarding sports rewards.

Another scenario that portrays the existence of gender inequality in school sports and generally in sports, is the hype that surrounds the male sports leagues in comparison to the female sports leagues (Vannini, 11). For instance, the basketball league that involves male high school and university teams get so much hype that it has been accused of causing employees to not work thoroughly in their jobs due to putting so much of their attention on the game. On the other hand, few people focus on the leagues that involve women, regardless of whether it is tennis, basketball, football or volleyball. This is a clear example of gender inequality in school sports in the USA, and across the world in general. The solution to the situation above is to ensure proper media promotion is given to women sports leagues thus prompting the society to engage in sports that involve women rather than just focusing on men sports league only.

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Gender inequality in school sports is not only visible among the students but also among the coaches. For instance, research has shown that there are more male coaches than females in many schools across the country. Additionally, male coaches earn more salaries than female coaches in the different schooling institutions do across the country, yet the law stipulates that all coaches regardless of their gender must get equal pay depending on the amount of money their institution rake in (Flake, Mikaela, and Erin, 371). However, male coaches still earn more money. More so, coaches also earn from other ventures such as appearance fees, endorsement deals, and different deals. As such, given that there are few female coaches, only the male coaches benefit mostly from this job. This is quite wrong and proper policies should put in place to ensure that the interests of women in employment, more so in sports, are protected. Such policies will ensure that women coaches get equal pays and benefits as their male counterparts.

Despite the increase in economic resources over the years, girls still continue to get less opportunities and rewards in sports across America. In small urban or community organizations, boys always receive more attention in regards to sports as compared to girls and this is reflected in schools and other organizations that engage in sports. A different research project shows that almost 7% of public schools across the USA dropped their sports program from their curriculum while 1% of all schools added sports to their curriculum over the past decade (Dashper, 217). Therefore, given the low numbers of females involved in sports at the time, the rate of gender inequality in school sports is set to increase if the trend continues.

Conclusion

The government and other social organizations should come up with ways that will encourage the engagement of both girls and boys in all the sports activities that are available in all schooling institutions. Some of the recommendations given to improving the situation of gender inequality involve implementing programs that educate the society on the importance of having women participate in sports in the same capacity as men. Additionally, women should be made aware of their rights to participate in sports thereby giving them the knowledge to know when they are discriminated against. Given that the world is focused on achieving the Millennium Development Goals, sport is an important aspect of education thus NGOs across the world should fight for the eradication of gender inequality in sports.

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The feminist theory advocates for the involvement of women in all economic, social, and political aspects of life. As such, women should be given equal opportunities as that given to men in regards to sports. Gender inequality in school sports is a controversial issue that a few people want to disregard yet it is affecting how the school system and the society, in general, should be functioning. Parents and teachers should raise the aspirations of girls to make them achieve more than what the society has set for them. Hence, there should be talks and debates that involve women and girls to motivate them to participate in sports just as much or even more than the boys do.

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  1. Lisec, John, and Mary G. McDonald. “Gender inequality in the new millennium: An analysis of WNBA representations in sport blogs.” Journal of Sports Media 7.2 (2012): 153-178.
  2. Chalabaev, Aïna, et al. “The influence of sex stereotypes and gender roles on participation and erformance in sport and exercise: Review and future directions.” Psychology of Sport   and Exercise 14.2 (2013): 136-144.
  3. Dashper, Katherine. “Together, yet still not equal? Sex integration in equestrian sport.” Asia Pacific Journal of Health, Sport and Physical Education 3.3 (2012): 213-225.
  4. Messner, Michael. “Gender ideologies, youth sports, and the production of soft essentialism.” Sociology of Sport Journal 28.2 (2011): 151-170.
  5. Wagner, Claudia, et al. “It’s a Man’s Wikipedia? Assessing Gender Inequality in an Online Encyclopedia.” ICWSM. 2015.
  6. Dworkin, Shari L., and Cheryl Cooky. “Sport, sex segregation, and sex testing: Critical reflections on this unjust marriage.” The American Journal of Bioethics 12.7 (2012): 21-23.
  7. Burton, Laura J. “Underrepresentation of women in sport leadership: A review of research.” Sport Management Review 18.2 (2015): 155-165.
  8. Flake, Collin R., Mikaela J. Dufur, and Erin L. Moore. “Advantage men: The sex pay gap in professional tennis.” International Review for the Sociology of Sport 48.3 (2013): 366-376.
  9. Love, Adam, and Kimberly Kelly. “Equity or essentialism? US courts and the legitimation of girls’ teams in high school sport.” Gender & Society 25.2 (2011): 227-249.
  10. Vannini, Phillip. Body/embodiment: Symbolic interaction and the sociology of the body. Routledge, 2016.
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