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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

International Gender Equality in Sports


While the United States has seen massive progress towards the goal of gender equity in sports, largely due to the impact of the Title IX legislation; many other countries have no such gender equity laws. There is still a lot of work that needs to be done in the United States, with many issues yet to be resolved. But as a nation, we are leaps and bounds ahead of some other countries. The concept of orthodox gender ideology was and still is a large obstacle, in the gender equality battle, within the United States. Progress is being made but more work needs to be done (Coakley, 2015).

In some other countries, orthodox gender ideology is the law. While progress is being made in gender equality, on a global level, many countries are steadfast in their old ways. Organizations such as the UN Women are established in over seventy five countries. Great efforts are being made in gender equality, across all major topics. But as in the United States, despite amazing advances, obstacles still remain around the world (Puri, 2012).

Countries such as India are places where traditional sports are not emphasized in general, let alone for women. Bangladesh recently had a surge in interest, in women’s surfing, but their version of orthodox gender ideology has basically wiped it out. There, women are discouraged from water events, after age twelve (Puri, 2012).

While there are still many countries that are far behind the international advances, made in gender equality in sports; many countries have made great progress. An example of progress can be seen, in the once male dominated sport of soccer. There are now national women’s leagues in many countries and they even have a world cup for women’s soccer. While this is a great advancement, issues still exist, such as the huge difference in media coverage and promotions for the men’s and women’s world cup. Internationally, there are many similarities in the progress made and obstacles that remain, for gender equality in sports, between the United States and other nations abroad (Mertens, 2015).

Despite the lack of advancement in gender equality in sports, in many nations around the world, it is getting better, statistically. Some nations, such as certain, strict Arab countries, which have rigid rules about where a woman’s place is, may never get on board with the global equality movement. Many other nations are coming around slowly, with the help of various international organizations. Some nations are making great advancements, with work still to be done. It will never be perfect everywhere, but it is getting better by the day, in many places around the world. The world as a whole has improved over the last thirty years and progress is continuing to be made. While there will always be some nations that will not toe the line, on gender equality in sports; the amount of progress being made internationally, is enough to give hope that the world will continue to get better (Coakley, 2015).


Coakley, J. (2015). Sports in society: Issues and controversies (11th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill

Puri, L. (2012). Women in the World of Sports. UN Women. Retrieved from

Mertens, M. (2015). Women's Soccer Is a Feminist Issue. The Atlantic. Retrieved from

Eric Dempsey
MS, Certified Lv1 Underground Strength Coach 
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