Women’s Volleyball… keep the bikinis on the beach.

Whist I’m in the habit of using this WordPress as a public ranting platform, I’m going to make yet another stab at the Olympics. 

I love sport, don’t get me wrong, I’m not unfamiliar with it myself and I also enjoy watching it – and yes, I find the athlete’s bodies absolutely fascinating. However, I do have a problem with women’s Volleyball. 

The uniform has been a subject of contention this year and now due to religious and cultural beliefs the teams are entitled to wear more than “bra-style tops and bikini bottoms that must not exceed six centimetres in width at the hip”. Cultural beliefs? The uniform is just downright sexist. The men aren’t parading about topless, wearing only budgie-smugglers are they – so why is it different for the women? It begun as a beach sport, which is apparently the reason for the bikinis, so where are the speedos?

I may wear short shorts and little tees when I run, it’s practical and yes, practicality does necessitate tight rugby tops, running vests, small clothes – but bikini tops? Really? I’m pretty sure they generally only use their hands to hit the ball so what’s with the bare cheeks hmm…?

The fact that my brother’s 16 year old friend was almost distraught when he realised he had tickets to the men’s and not the women’s Olympic Volleyball just goes to show that the things that people are intently watching bounce around at these matches are not necessarily the volleyballs.

They’re fit. They know it, we know it – it’s good. I don’t blame them for being proud of and wanting to have their bodies on show, but the idea of people only watching professional athletes compete so that they can catch a flash of their … …. just doesn’t wash with me. It’s pretty amazing how well women are doing in the Olympics this year, some countries had their first ever female athletes competing this year, and I just think they should be respected for their talent and not just their ‘talents’.

Most women who have ever been to the gym have at some stage noticed a pair of eyes following a legging-clad bum in the mirror, or been incredibly aware of what’s on view as you’re trying to stretch in the corner – just because those eyes are watching remotely through BBC One or sitting up in the Olympic stands, it doesn’t make it any less perverted.

Unlike those occasional gym situations, in this case men cannot be blamed as these tiny-bikini-clad-bums are thrown in their faces – I ashamedly never know quite where to look when Tom Daley is on the television (however of course his speedos are swimming necessity) – so let’s get practical, respect women for their sportsmanship and stop confusing people by talking about equality then getting the female athletes naked, okay?

Maybe I’m a prude, but personally I think those bronzed bodies should be shown off outside of the pitch.

Feminist rant finit. 

FYI I don’t hate men – felt the need to clear that one up.


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