Growing up in the 1980s and 1990s, a lot of what I remember about my childhood revolves around sports. Every summer I would run around with my neighbourhood friends playing street hockey. Later I would go on to play soccer. I was the girl who LOVED gym class!
It was hard then, and difficult now, to imagine not having access to sports because of being a girl. Which isn’t to suggest that girls, and women, in the West, and elsewhere, don’t have a hard time finding places to play and money to support their athletic ambitions, but no one questioned my playing sports as a youngster. No one said I couldn’t and denied me the option.
Once upon a time, girls, women, playing sports was a major taboo and access needed to be fought for (feminism is so relevant). Case in point, espnW posted this great piece called “The Girls Who Toppled Little League” written by featured columnist Melissa Isaacson who writes:
“Forty summers ago, Cinseruli, a 10-year-old from Peabody, Massachusetts, was one of approximately 20 girls across the United States who filed lawsuits against Little League baseball for the right to play. Or as one judge put it, to do something ‘as American as the hot dog and apple pie'”.
Great historical piece – puts things in perspective.