It’s time for women’s sports to recieve equivalent support

Bradyn Johnson | The Chronicle

Women all over the world have fought for equality in society, and fighting for equality in women’s sports is no different. As a teenage athlete, that also happens to be a girl, I see it all the time.

For instance, when I turn on the TV to watch a Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) game, I search the television only to see that there is a little more than half of the arena that is filled. These women are amongst the best athletes in the World and it feels like they get the least coverage and overall support. However, as soon as I turn the channel to a National Basketball Association(NBA) game my eyes dart to the audience as I observe I see an abundance of fans. The stands are completely packed with people. This always confuses me because WNBA games are just as fundamentally sound as NBA games.

The lack of support doesn’t just occur in professional leagues, it continues in collegiate sports too. Back in March, I had been watching ‘March Madness.’ On social media, there had been word that during the tournament the men’s teams got loads of March Madness gear that consisted of shirts, water bottles, pants, jackets, and much more, and not to mention the March Madness officials built an entire weight room. Then I wondered what the women’s teams were getting as well. Let’s just say that it wasn’t what I was expecting. They got a rack of weights in a large room and a couple of t-shirts, I’m not even going to mention their tasteless Covid meals. I was flabbergasted when I saw this biased form of bigotry, did the March Madness officials think this would go unnoticed?

The inequality not only happens to women in basketball but other sports as well. Take into account the U.S. women’s professional soccer team that is ranked number one in the world. They fought to get equal pay for doing the same job that the mens’ soccer team does, and maybe even better. The Washington Post stated that 28 female players sued the U.S. Soccer Federation(USSF) for equal pay. The lack of support and equality happens everywhere and not just in professional sports.

These biased events make my toes curl because I live it, and I’ve also learned to accept it. I play varsity girls basketball and the average attendance is similar to that of the WNBA games, except ours are filled with parents, grandparents, siblings, and cousins.

Now don’t get me wrong, at least they support us, but sometimes that’s just not enough. The most frustrating part is when you have to beg people to come to your games for even a little support and encouragement. It would be easy to say that it is inconvenient for students to come to games on weekdays, however, if you attend the same sporting events with the opposite gender they get a good amount of support no matter what day.

I know that it could be a financial hardship for students to attend multiple games during the week, so offering incentives like free admission for students, simply giving out free pizza and popcorn or even enticing students with raffle games to play may be a solution. We should do whatever it takes to pack our stands because when we have fans, playing the game feel so much more exhilarating. Knowing that the whole school is there to cheer you on and give you support makes it feel like you are on top of the world during that short 60 minutes of play. I can’t ever help but smile when there is a crowd cheering us on.

At the end of the day, it is important to cheer your school’s teams on no matter what sport they play or what gender they happen to be. It never hurts to show support.