WHICH I AM, MIND YOU
...just not all the time. I LIKE riding with men, but I also like riding with strong women. The conversation is different. The purpose is different we don't feel the need to pip each other at the top of every hill.
The recreational club I ride with now and again is huge, with rides of varying distances and speeds to accommodate those with hybrids riding 15 miles, all the way to the hard cores on their race bikes. I can only speak to that middlin’ to higher-paced segment -- there’s a direct correlation between faster rides and fewer women.
I know my entry into sports was influenced by a try-anything group of high school girlfriends who were up for it all -- that, and the passage of Title IX which finally provided women's sports beyond gymnastics, tennis and golf. We’d never touched a volleyball before, never dribbled a basketball, and we threw a softball as though we were in the shot-put circle; but there we were standing on the baseline in our red, canvas, high-top Converses ready to absorb it all.
According to one source in my non-exhaustive search:
- Before Title IX, young women were 7% of the students participating in high school sports. In 2001, young women are 41.5% of the students participating in high school sports. In raw numbers, we went from 300,000 to 2.7 million athletes-a gain of over 800%.
- Before Title IX, women were 2% of the college students participating in sports. In 2001, women were 43% of the college students participating in sports. In raw numbers, we went from 32,000 to 150,000 athletes -- a gain of over 400%.
Why aren’t they out on bicycles?
- things that make TOB go hmmmm