20 women the 20 most influential women in sports – part 2

By / June 15, 2016

Lydia Stephans

36, vice president of programming, ABC Sports

The idea for a women’s sports series had been tossed around for years, but the popular show A Passion To Play didn’t get off the ground until Lydia Stephans became the first female vice president of a network sports division. “I had to reach a certain level in the sports television industry before my passion and belief in women’s sport could be heard with credibility,” says Stephans, a member of the 1984 Olympic speedskating team. Marketability has to be Stephans’ bottom line. “We are really at the mercy of what our advertisers and viewers are interested in watching,” she says. “Ninety-seven percent of the sports on network television are men’s sports.” Still, her efforts to create and prove the market for women’s sports are groundbreaking. “It’s a long process,” she says. “My efforts will help make a dent. The generation that is just now coming into the sports television business will use what I and other women have done as a stepping-stone.” (more…)

20 women the 20 most influential women in sports – part 1

By / June 15, 2016

Who would have thought that, in the end, it would all come down to shopping. Yes, shopping, or more accurately, consuming, has purchased women the power to change the course of the sports world. Trips to the store to pick up another pair of running shoes, a surf of the sports telecasts when in command of the clicker, that stack of fitness magazines on the top-priority corner of your night table — all boil down to the tantalizing bottom line of current market research: Women buy sports.

Showing that we have the money finally convinced the gatekeepers of the wide world of sports that there is room enough in that world for women, too. This social and economic trend begun in earnest in the early `70s, with passage of federal legislation mandating that public schools provide equal opportunity for girls. Now, record numbers of females are participating in athletics and women have surpassed men in many areas as consumers of athletic apparel. With U.S. women dominating in last summer’s Olympics came proof that not only did those girls learn to play, the public loves to watch them. (more…)

The still veiled cycle of menstruation

By / June 15, 2016

It was a time when we were in class sixth, the age when various internal and external bodily changes occured. The discoveries were our own as no one used to talk about it and we were told it is time to focus only on studies rather getting involved in useless conversation. In schools I remember those days the most common punishment was sitting out of the principal’s office which was rather a fun instead of feeling that you were punished.

I remember our class was punished as we all were shouting in the class and as usual we were having a fun time. Suddenly we heard one of our class-mate sitting and crying, reason to which was not known to any of us not even her best friend. Our teacher was called up by the CR (class representative) and we could see her talking. After some time we were instructed to go back to the class and the story was still a mystery to us. The only thing some of us could see was the blood stained uniform of our friend. However, answer to this mystery came to my knowledge after 3 years of time when I was able to relate to that situation which we now commonly know as ‘periods’. (more…)

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