Does Orientation Impact Sports Careers?

Does Orientation Impact Sports Careers?

Health and Fitness

Does Orientation Impact Sports Careers?

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Many professional female athletes are proud members of the LGBTQ community. Whether these athletes are stars in the realms of basketball, soccer, or tennis, their personal stories and advocacy for gay rights make them inspirations for sports fans all over the world. Some notable openly gay female athletes have competed in the Olympics and other talented lesbian athletes are World Cup champions.

LGBT discrimination and impacts on sport

The LGBT community has faced a great deal of adversity in the realm of women’s sports. Often, the university sports programs were underfunded by the schools to bolster their other projects. The sexuality of the athletes has also become a topic of debate with people arguing that they didn’t want lesbian on their team or in their program. The issues extended far beyond the locker rooms, though. There are still many countries that would like to place an outright ban on lesbians in sports even if they are competing from foreign nations. These are just some of the issues that sports at every level have faced, from youth soccer to the Olympics. It doesn’t take much research to show that sports have been impacted and so have athletes. Many women still hide their sexuality from their teammates and the public for fear of retribution, while many others simply stay out of sports due to the high level of discomfort imposed upon them. The discrimination faced by women in the LGBT community is still a massive problem and it has much room for improvement. 

Sep 21, 2019; Frisco, TX, USA; Hall inductee Abby Wambach poses for a photo in front of her Hall display before the induction ceremony at the National Soccer Hall of Fame. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

How athletes can deal with loneliness 

Although athletes often have the support of their friends and teammates, they may still get lonely from time to time. Competitive sports can drive a wedge between people and the constant need to improve and then travel can leave a person’s social life in the doldrums. The fortunate part is that there are several approaches that people could take if they’re looking to pull themselves out of feelings of loneliness. For example, anyone could put more effort into being socially active. There are always people looking to chat and meet in person and online. Take the time to sit in a chat room and get to know random people. You might just strike gold! While we’re on the topic, you could engage in a more romantic outcome as well. In case you are looking for a date, flirtmoms can be a great advantage to find your soulmate and easy way to communicate with a wide variety of partners. Romantic relationships can be the missing piece of the puzzle that helps you overcome feelings of social shortcomings. Another thing that you can do is spend less time alone. It’s a great big world out there, and you can find new ways to go and be a part of it. You might pick up a new hobby and hang out with a new crowd to increase your interest in it. Lastly, you could make sure that you’re not drawn to the falsehoods promoted by social media. Everyone’s profiles show them as being in a picturesque world with nice cars, good looks, and other superficial elements. It’s important to step away from that sort of influence and find aspects of your own life to celebrate and be happy about. You might not be hitting the dance floor and riding in a Cadillac, but you could have a really deep conversation with a friend that will change both of you for the better. 

Famous Lesbian Athletes

Mar 12, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner in attendance of the Phoenix Suns game against the Portland Trail Blazers at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The new generation of lesbians that are seeking validation as athletes have many people to thank for blazing the trail. Some of the women that worked to normalize the presence of LGBT people in sports include:

  • Abby Wambach
  • Ursula Holl
  • Brittney Griner
  • Lisa Raymond
  • Sarah Walsh

These names will certainly echo in the world of sports history for a long time. After all, these athletes didn’t let anyone hold them back from success when everyone seemed to be against them. They challenged the status quo, and several of them felt comfortable enough to risk their career to promote fairness in sports. Many other women not listed fought the good fight and will continue to do so in the future. 

There is still a certain degree of homophobia in women’s sports today. The problem is getting better, but it is far from being solved. Women all over the world face different forms of discrimination in sports. It is up to people at all levels of athletics to be welcoming and supportive of women in their programs even if they love someone of the same sex. While legal outcomes have helped these women, everyday encounters must also get better to promote a welcoming environment. 

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