Fast Five Facts: Women In Sports History
Posted on 20 March 2017
With the first day of spring and the weather warming up, here are some fascinating facts about athletics to continue our celebration of Women’s History Month!
Women were not allowed at the first Olympics, but they could participate in the Games of Hera, which were also held every four years. (Female athletes at the Games of Hera depicted on Ancient Greek pottery)
Mary, Queen of Scots was one of the most fascinating and controversial figures of the 16th century. She was also the first woman to play golf in Scotland. Even today golf is still seen as a man’s sport, but the powerful and scandalous queen thought otherwise. She even went out to play golf a few days after her husband Lord Darnley’s murder.
At the first Winter Olympic Games in 1924, the only event open to women was figure skating. Only 15 women participated in the 1924 games. In fact, some events like the 800 meter race were banned for women until 1960! (Pictured: Norwegian figure skater Sonja Henie. While she didn't win gold in 1924, She did in 1928, 1932 and 1936. Henie is credited with being the first figure skater to adopt the short skirt costume, wear white boots, and make use of dance choreography. She later went on to become a movie star.)
Virne “Jackie” Mitchell was the first woman in professional baseball. During an exhibition game on April 2, 1931, she struck out both Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. She was only 17 years old. Her performance probably played a part in baseball commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis banning women from the sport later that year.
Roberta Gibb was the first woman to run and finish the Boston Marathon in 1966. She didn’t get official credit for it as women were not allowed to enter the race until 1972, but her wins in ’66, ’67, and ’68 seriously challenged long-held beliefs about the athletic prowess of women. (Pictured: 2016 Boston Marathon Winner Atsede Baysa giving Roberta Gibb her winner's trophy, in honor of her historic 1966 run)
We hope you enjoyed learning a little bit about the history of women in sports. We don't just thrive to provide you with fashionable bohemian style dresses, accessories & jewelry, or to provide with you with the best boho chic clothing; we also thrive to share our love of education with you!