What Do Olympic Boxing and Badminton Have in Common? Skirts

posted by Cheryl Ragsdale, a Women Talk Sports blogger
Saturday, October 29, 2011 at 5:30pm EDT

About Cheryl Ragsdale:

Cheryl Ragsdale practices martial arts for fun and physical fitness at Florian Martial Arts Center. She was recently promoted to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Blue Belt by Keith Florian and Kenny Florian, UFC F...more

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This article is a reprint from Yahoo! Sports.

First, it was "let's have women wear skirts to compete in badminton at the Olympics". That conversation didn't go well. But that hasn't stopped the the Amateur International Boxing Association, or AIBA from suggesting that women wear skirts to compete in London 2012.

two women boxing

You know you're going to get into trouble as soon as you start telling women what to wear.

Here's the back story on the Badminton World Federation officials effort to mandate what women wear when competing. "An attempt by badminton's governing body to force professional female players to wear skirts or dresses has been condemned as 'a regressive and damaging attempt to sex up the game' by Hugh Robertson, the UK minister for sport. The Badminton World Federation (BWF) says the dress code is necessary to make women athletes appear more feminine, thereby reviving flagging interest in the sport from fans and corporate sponsors." source

Female Boxing Olympics 2012

"The Amateur International Boxing Association has asked female boxers to wear skirts, which it said would allow spectators to distinguish them from men, but at last week's European Championships in Rotterdam only two nations - Poland and Romania - wore the outfits. Poland Boxing took it a step further and made the attire compulsory for its boxers, saying they are more 'elegant'. The Poland coach, Leszek Piotrowski, said: 'By wearing skirts, in my opinion, it gives a good impression, a womanly impression'."

Now that's a curious point of view. The Polish team's choice of skirt is light blue, swirly and flippy. Coach Piotrowski told BBC Sport, "Wearing shorts is not a good way for women boxers to dress." source

Women Who Fight in Skirts

I belong to the WMMA (Women's Mixed Martial Arts) Advocate Group on Facebook. The idea of women wearing skirts sparked some interesting conversation. I was surprised to discover that some women actually like to fight wearing a skirt.

There is a combat sport where both men and women fight in skirts.

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What Do Olympic Boxing and Badminton Have in Common? Skirts

photo credit: wikimedia commons

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