In the wake of the US Women’s dramatic World Cup win, female athletes are finally poised to get the respect–and admiration–they so very much deserve. Here are some of the advantages women have on the field:
Women typically have longer, more elastic muscles than men, which in turn makes them more flexible. This gives women an advantage in sports requiring flexibility, like gymnastics, diving, skiing, and more.
That’s right: fat can be an advantage. Typically, the leanest female marathoners have at least 8% body fat, whereas their male counterparts have 4%. In endurance athletes, that extra fuel helps women go the extra mile. In the pool, it provides extra buoyancy to combat water’s resistance.
Women have a lower center of gravity, which generally means better balance.
Over the past century, as athletics have opened up to women, women’s records have been improving quickly–in some sports, much more so than the records of their male counterparts. Perhaps, in the past, physiological differences between men and women have been overemphasized, and cultural conditioning has played as large a role as biology in determining performance.