Men and women have engaged in separate categories of sports for decades. From basketball to soccer, rugby to tennis, gender has always divided activities of all kinds. Of course, the reason for this is relatively obvious; men and women are of very different proportions and physicals compositions, thus rendering their status as quite different in terms of weight, muscle mass, height and build. For this reason, it is thought to be an unfair practice to pit the sexes against each other in competitive sports where physicality, strength and endurance is a top priority and a very distinguishing feature. As modern perceptions shift and ideas evolve, it has been called into question whether or not men and women should combine their sports? The simple answer is no.
Different Degrees of Strength
Men and women are composed of very different degrees of muscle, height and build. Since competitive activities are based very much on physical endurance and strength as much as skill and knowledge, competitors must be within, or be capable of being within, similar ranges of physicality in order for fairness to be exacted. Pitting a woman against a man in a sport such as rugby or even tennis, would not always be a fair fight. Men are inherently taller, stronger and more physically aggressive than women. Of course, there are many exceptions to this rule, where women are much taller, stronger and have more muscle mass than men, but as a generalization, this is a biological fact.
In addition to strength, women have different body parts, plain and simple. Whereas same sex teams are accustomed to avoiding or potentially injuring certain parts of the body in competition, opposing members of the opposite sex can present the problem of increased injuries as certain areas are more sensitive than others depending on maleness or femaleness.
Combining men’s and women’s competition is not a good idea. Fundamental biological and physical differences make the prospect unfair and unbalanced. Of course, if there were ways to acknowledge this via previous physical assessments or varying game rules depending on gender, it may be more feasible but this would perhaps be more complicated than anything else. As it stands, separating men’s and women’s sports makes the most sense and it would be unfair and almost futile to combine them.
Picture: karaboux – Fotolia