Women in Sports

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Earlier sports used to be just an arena of men. In the 19th and 20th century sports used to be just male dominated and women had very little to do with it. It was a way of men to show their masculinity. The first Olympic games in the modern era, which were held in 1896 were not open to women, but since then the number of women who have participated in the Olympic games have increased dramatically.

It was only after the 1900s that women started taking initiatives and participating in sports events.The modern Olympics had female competitors only from 1900 onward, though women at first participated in considerably fewer events than men. Concern over the physical strength and stamina of women led to the discouragement of female participation in more physically intensive sports, and in some cases led to less physically demanding female versions of male sports. There was a lot of concern over the physical strength and stamina of women which led to the discouragement of women and a decrease in female participation in more physically intensive sports. After deliberation in some cases this led to less physically demanding female versions of male sports, to increase the women participation. And now in the 21st century sports is no longer just about men, women are now a significant part of and are shining like stars in this field.

#1

Yelena Isinbayeva

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She is a Russian pole vaulter and she is also a two time Olympic gold medalist. She is also a three time world champion (2005,2007 and 2009). Along with this she is also the current world record holder in the event and she is considered y considered the greatest female pole-vaulter of all time.Isinbayeva was named Female Athlete of the Year by the IAAF in 2004, 2005 and 2008, and World Sportswoman of the Year by Laureus in 2007 and 2009. She was given the Prince of Asturias Award for Sports in 2009.

She has set 28 world records (15 outdoor and 13 indoor), and was virtually unbeaten between 2004 and 2009. Also she won nine straight gold medals in indoor and outdoor championships. Not just this she was also elected IAAF World Athlete of the Year in 2004, 2005 and 2008. Isinbayeva has established herself as one of the most successful athletes of her generation.

#2

Saina Nehwal

 

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Saina Nehwal  is an Indian badminton player who attained a career best ranking of 2 in December 2010 by Badminton World Federation. She is also the first Indian to win a medal in Badminton at the Olympics. She won the bronze medal in the London 2012 Olympics . She has also won various awards like  Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Padma Shri, Arjuna Award for Badminton.

And she has achieved all of this at an age of just 24. She was born in 1990 in the state of Haryana.. Apart from upsetting some of the top seeded players in World Badminton, Saina has to her credit the achievement of being the first Indian woman to have entered the Quart Final round of Badminton event at the Olympic Games.Throughout her Badminton career so far, Saina has been able to topple some of the top Badminton players of the world in her tournaments. These players include Huaiwen XU, Julia Xian Pei of Malaysia, and the World No. 6 Wang Chen of Hong Kong.

#3

Steffi Graf

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Steffi Graf is a former number 1 German Tennis Player. She has won 22 Grand Slam singles titles and was second among male and female players only to Margaret Court’s 24. Her 22 singles titles mark the record for most Grand Slam wins by a tennis player (male or female) since the introduction of the Open Era in 1968. In 1988, she became the first and only tennis player (male or female) to achieve the Calendar Year Golden Slam by winning all four Grand Slam singles titles and the Olympic gold medal in the same calendar year.

Graf was ranked World No. 1 by the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) for a record 377 total weeks; the longest period for which any player, male or female, has held the number-one ranking since the WTA and the Association of Tennis Professionals began issuing rankings. She won 107 singles titles, which ranks her third on the WTA’s all-time list after Martina Navratilova (167 titles) and Chris Evert (157 titles).

#4

Maria Sharapova

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Sharapova made her professional breakthrough in 2004 at age 17, when she defeated two-time defending champion and top seed.Serena Williams in the 2004 Wimbledon final for her first Grand Slam singles title. She entered the top 10 of the WTA Rankings with the win. The world no. 1 ranking followed in 2005, along with subsequent major titles at the 2006 US Open and 2008 Australian.

Sharapova has been featured in a number of modeling assignments, including a feature in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. She has been featured in many advertisements, including for Nike, Prince, and Canon, and is the face of several fashion houses, most notably Cole Haan. Since February 2007, she has been a United Nations Development Programme Goodwill Ambassador, concerned specifically with the Chernobyl Recovery and Development Programme.

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