Feminism in Canadian and World Sports | By Carleigh Miller

From October 22-26, The Wanderer Online is participating in the “Who Needs Feminism?” Call to Action Week, which you can read more about here. Throughout the week, we’ll be posting 2-4 articles per day where writers answer the question “I need feminism because…” If you’re interested in writing something, please send us your piece at wnfualberta@gmail.com.

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I need feminism because it allows me to be the athlete I was born to be. I have been given the opportunity to play a high level of soccer for my university and the chance to go further in sports within Canada. Without feminism, I would be left to fight for the right to play soccer, not only just for fun, but also competitively. It is amazing how women in Canada have so many opportunities in sport where other countries show little support or recognition to those women who are athletically gifted. However, women around the world are still fighting for equality and respect in athletics, as men have more opportunities, more funding, and more recognition. Feminism in sport has allowed women to bring forth a different identity and meaning in their lives. Female athletes are a special diverse group in that they have a high motivation to be the best they can be, and are driven to succeed and compete.

Growing up in Edmonton, I have been exposed to many different kinds of sports. I have travelled around the world playing for different teams, and was given the opportunity to represent my country in soccer. I would have never gone as far as I did without the support of my family and my mentors who have pushed me to be the athlete I am today. Feminism in sport has defied the myth that girls cannot achieve their goals. There are many people out there who feel the need to tear down women’s ambitions in sports. However, if I have learned one thing through my athletic journey, it is that through perseverance and focus, any girl can accomplish and fulfill their athletic aspirations, regardless of the obstacles and challenges that interfere.

 Carleigh Miller is the captain of the Pandas varsity soccer team and a fifth-year Nursing student at the University of Alberta.

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