Fashion in sport. Not something most of us think about all that much, is it? Perhaps when you’re watching figure skaters or gymnasts, yes, but what about golf and curling and tennis? Even though it’s not something many people may think about, I have been thinking about it a lot lately, and decided to write a little bit about it. On this blog, you’ll find posts about the history of fashion in certain sports. If there’s any sport about whose fashion you’d like to read a synopsis, be sure to check out my contact page and give me a shout with your request!
From the research I’ve done so far, it seems to me that for women, at least, fashion has dictated what they wear when they play sports at much as practicality. And a lot of the time, it wasn’t by choice. Which is just a huge sexist pain in the butt. Just wait until you read about women in tennis! A hundred years ago, they had to play in corsets and floor-length skirts! What’s that about? Luckily, the sports I’ve chosen to engage in in my life haven’t restricted me in terms of uniform just because I happen to be female.
There have been differences, of course, between things I’ve work and things my male counterparts have worn, and all have been for the benefit of the wearer, and not for some ridiculous fashionable reason. Most of these things have been based on protection. For example, in fencing, women are required to wear breast plates (for which I am very thankful), whereas men are not. Men were permitted to wear them, but I don’t think a single one of them did, for fear that it would make them look weak. Which is kinda sad. And a good example about how sexism hurts everyone! And their chests! None of the guys I know wore athletic cups, either, which was just so stupid. Some of them said they didn’t need them, others said they were uncomfortable. Either way. Stupid.
Cups and breast plates are the kinds of uniform parts that I totally understand have to be different for women and men. Shorts vs skirts, on the other hand … not so much. If women want to wear tennis skirts, that’s totally cool. I think they’re adorable. But if they want to wear shorts, I think they should do that, and that they shouldn’t get shade thrown at them for it. Because what the heck. I do respect tradition, but as long as tradition treats men and women equally, like Wimbledon’s requirement that all the competitors wear white. But if you’re going to follow tradition, just make sure it’s fair to both genders, you know? And that goes both ways! Just so happens that it’s usually women’s fashion that’s more … constricting.
So although this intro became a whole lot about women’s sports fashion vs men’s sports fashion, that’s not what this blog is all about, promise! I just explore the most interesting changes in sports fashion, and whether they happen to affect women, men, or both is incidental!