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    Widespread Sexism in Sports Disciplines, Media Reports Persists

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    Many sport disciplines remain sexist, despite hundreds of thousands of women practicing sports recreationally or professionally.

    MOSCOW, September 18 (RIA Novosti) - Many sport disciplines remain sexist, despite hundreds of thousands of women practicing sports recreationally or professionally.

    In gymnastics, male and female sportsmen share only two common events, the vault and floor. While women have four events (vault, uneven bars, balance beam and floor), men compete in six apparatus (floor, pommel horse, vault, rings, parallel bars and high bar).

    With regards to athletics, men have competed in the decathlon at every Olympic Games since 1912, while women have not had any major international decathlon event for years.

    In women's lacrosse, they are only permitted to use a stick, while men can use both full body and stick contact.

    In bobsleigh, international federations argue that women do not have sufficient power-to-weight ratio to run four-seat bobs, so women only compete in a two-woman bobsleigh.

    Former world champion, Nicola Minichiello claims that allowing women to use four-seat bobs would have benefits for their long term health.

    "It could help prolong their careers because, with four in the team, that's less physical push exertion on the body," Minichiello told BBC.

    In swimming, there is no 1,500 meters freestyle event for women at Olympic level, only men are allowed to compete in these long distance swimming races.

    In cycling, women cannot participate in the most prestigious race the Tour de France, which offers the highest prize money. Woman can only race up to 140 km a day on the road, while men are allowed race distances of 240 km.

    "There is no doubt that there are important physical differences between men and women. They range from men's denser bones [which can support more muscle], taller stature, longer proportional limbs, to more oxygen-carrying red-blood cells… That, of course, is why we separate men and women for the purposes of competition. But the short answer is: there's no good reason that women don't have the events that men do," sports writer Davis Epstein said as quoted by BBC.

    The Huffington Post also adds golf to the list of sexist sports. One of the oldest major championships in professional golf, called the Open Championship, does not accept female members in its club.

    According to James Angelini, assistant professor at the University of Delaware, who published an article for the Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, it is not only sports itself, but also sports media and commentators who are sexist. Anghelini found that during the Olympics, men received 62 percent of prime-time coverage while women received only 32 percent. Out of the 20 most mentioned athletes, 75 percent were men, and they received 336 percent more mentions than women.

    Tags:
    men's gymnastics, Olympic Games, swimming, gymnastics, sport
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