We’re MMU Sport’s female scholars and here’s what we think about the stereotypes we hear about women in sport.
Ellie Richardson, GB track cyclist
Sadly there is still bit of a notion that “you have to be big to be a sprinter” in track cycling. Despite having worked hard to gain lean muscle mass over the past couple of years I still weigh in under 60kg and so I definitely do not conform to this stereotype.
However, I think “you have to be fast to be a sprinter” would be a better mantra – the likes of Victoria Pendleton and Laura Trott certainly show that talent and ability isn’t restricted to certain body types!
Amy Salt, Olympic weightlifter
I think my sport is particularly bad for stereotypes. I get a lot of women who speak to me are surprised at how feminine I look as their view of a weightlifter is very muscular, which is not true at all.
For me it has given me a more feminine figure than I had before and that “toned” look women’s magazines always talk about. Sorry ladies, for a Beyonce booty and small waist you will have to lift something heavier than the 5kg dumbells!
Emily Hollinshead, footballer for Everton Ladies
I think there is definitely stereotypes in women’s football, especially to do with sexuality. I ignore all the comments like that and just get on with playing.
Aine Curran, hockey player
Some people believe that hockey is for the “posh folk”. Unfortunately I do not apply to this rule and this is pretty obvious when I open my mouth and my thick Irish accent is evident!
There is no such thing as a “right body type”. Hockey players come in all shapes and sizes and it does not matter how you look to play sport. If you want to play, go for it!
Chloe Golding, swimmer
I don’t know if I quite conform to the “massive shoulders” stereotype just yet, but if I do I honestly don’t mind, who wouldn’t want to be more powerful in the water? I’ll take any advantage I can get to make me faster!
I know that some people can get nervous about going swimming because they feel as though everyone can see everything on them, but there are more people than you realise in that position so if you want to and enjoy doing something, no one can stop you so just go for it.
Jess Coulson, long distance runner
Most people think you have to be slim and lean to run, but this is massively incorrect anyone can run, all it is, is putting one foot in front of the other at any pace that suits you.
Anyone can do it anytime anywhere all you need is one pair of trainers and off you go whatever size or shape you are it is your run, no one else’s’, be strong!
Amber Sawford, kata martial artist
I’m 5’1″ so am quite small for the competitive fighting aspect of karate, but that has never stopped me. You can be any size or shape…you just need to believe in yourself and have that fire!