4 Traditionally Male-Dominated Sports Becoming More Popular With Women

Equality for women has come a long way in the past 50 years, and there are few places that this is more apparent than in the sporting world. It wasn’t so long ago that a female athlete competing on the same grounds as their male counterparts would have been unheard of. Today, women are excelling in many sporting events that were once primarily male-dominated.

Since the passage of Title IX in 1972, which secured equal rights to eventing and education for both males and females, more young women can discover passions in events and sports that would not have been offered to them in the past. In the past half-century, general attitudes about women participating in sports have changed dramatically, and it’s common to find female sporting associations in sports like fishing, hunting, and rugby. 

Women are free to get out on the water under their Stryker T-Tops and compete with the best male anglers in the world at International Fishing Tournaments or hit the green for a professional level round of golf. Let’s look at a few traditionally male-dominated sports that are now being adopted and excelled at by talented women.

Hunting

As recently as 2010, less than 3% of registered hunters were women. However, since then, sport hunting has hosted many successful women hunters that are breaking the gender barriers out in the field. Women being recognized as talented hunters represents a monumental shift in attitudes across the hunting world. In sporting goods stores like Pro Bass Shops, you can now see gear and equipment companies that are specifically marketing to new female hunters. Barbara Sackman is one of the over three million women embarking on the hunter’s lifestyle, and she holds over 190 SCI world records.

Motocross

Women have been competing in Motocross since the 1970s, they have faced many challenges. A  lack of sponsorship and efforts to minimize the female circuit by cutting races and changing rules has led some top riders to leave the circuit altogether. Some female riders have pushed past the limitation and chosen to ride with the men, competing directly in the men’s events instead of their circuit. Professional riders like Vicky Golden have set the standard by competing and completing Men’s circuit races like the Supercross series, setting an example of perseverance for the next generation of female motocross riders.

Fishing

Millions of little girls have enjoyed a day out on the water fishing with their dads, but few continue angling as they get older. Much of the reason behind the lack of continuation for females in fishing comes from the sport’s overwhelmingly male-oriented professional aspects. In the past two decades, we have seen a dramatic increase in professional female anglers competing and winning alongside their male counterparts. From April Archer, CEO of SaraBella Fishing, who owns her own fly-rod company, to Leiza Fitzgerald, who is blazing a winding path through several North American angling competitions, the time is now for women to make waves in the sport of fishing.

Rugby

Who says that women don’t like to get down and dirty on the field? Although women have been playing Rugby for over 50 years, it hasn’t drawn much attention or sponsorship to become more popular. Since 2011, female rugby players have been granted professional contracts bringing a new enthusiasm about women playing on the field. Now, nearly a dozen countries send teams to the World Cup of Women’s rugby to compete on the world stage.

It may have taken years for male-dominated sports to be adopted by women and accepted socially. Still, the strides that the incredible female athletes are making as far as providing opportunities for the younger generation are tremendous. Get out and support your local women in sports and enjoy watching them bring their best game. 

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