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Why Do Women Watch Men’s Sports?

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Why do you think women watch sports like baseball, football, and basketball? Do you think it is because basketball players deltoids are looking so ripped in their perfectly cut jerseys that helps accentuate the shoulder area? Do you think we watch football to check out the tight asses running up and down the field in those oh so fine tight pants? Do you think we tune into the MLB to catch a glimpse of a player with his hat turned backwards? I can tell you, if you are looking into my eyes and you put that hat on backwards, you will have me at “Are you a Cubs fan or White Sox?” By the way, I am a White Sox fan!

Those are not the reasons why women watch men’s sports. I am sure there are other reasons why men tune into women’s beach volleyball other than the skimpy bikinis and hot legs. I think eye candy and sports go hand in hand. Lets get down to the reasons women love sports, or just the reasons I do!

I love athletes that persevere and win their game. I love to see a wide receiver covered perfectly, yet the quarterback executes his pass to perfection, which in turn motivates the wide receiver to jump over two guys to get the catch and roll into the end zone. That is fantastic! Or how about a running back breaking tackles, spinning, jumping and diving into the end zone. No one did it better than Sweetness. I miss you number 34!

I will never forget watching Mike Singletary’s eyes at middle linebacker. The intensity of a smart middle linebacker is like watching a tiger go after it’s prey. They are about to attack, but no one knows where. When they get their prey, the quarterback or the running back or full back or even the wide receiver, the prey knows who they have been taken down by a, fiercer opponent.

Basketball is a pure adrenaline rush! I don’t like Kobe Bryant, but the guy is mesmerizing. His skills are comparable to the best basketball player and athlete walking the planet, Michael Jordan. I would sit and watch Michael shoot a jump shot, dunk the ball from the free throw line, pass by the opponent on a fast break and slam it home, with my mouth open and at times tears in my eyes due to the gift of Michael and entertainment. Don’t even get me started on March Madness! I am ready to hear Dick Vitale again and his voice that sounds like he his part horse and part duck.

Baseball is a game of strategy. I love watching the communication that goes on between a pitcher and a catcher. The batter has no idea what pitch is going to be thrown at him. He only has a split second to figure it out. The best part is when the count is 3-2 and I try to guess what the pitcher will throw next. Eight out of ten times I am right!

There is no other game that an athlete fails at more than as a batter in the MLB. It is a given. If you hit three times out of eight you are doing awesome. That means you failed five times. But think about what you have to do as a hitter. There are five or more different types of pitches coming at you with different speeds and velocity. You have a split second to decide if you are swinging and where will you swing your bat. If you swing too early you better have long arms to reach for that ball and pull it. If you swing too late you better be strong enough to pull it down the right field line. Wow! That is awesome!

Let’s not forget base stealing, the athleticism of your infield, and the agility and hand eye coordination of your outfielders. Or the coaches on first and third deciding who will steal, who will run and who will slide. The strategy of the game of baseball is better than any Scrabble, Monopoly or Game of Life.

What about when the game is tied in the bottom of ninth with two outs. Or the fourth quarter with 7.3 seconds left and LeBron James has the ball. Or the fourth quarter at the two minute warning and the offensive team is on the 50-yard line, 15 yards away from field goal range and it is third down and six!

About Heather Hogan

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    “By the way, I am a White Sox fan!”

    Ah, I don’t think you’re supposed to admit that in public.

  • http://drdreadful.blogspot.com Dr Dreadful

    As an explanation of the technical and strategical factors that make professional sports appealing to the connoisseur, this is a good piece.

    As what it set out to do – explain why women would rather watch male sports than, say, the WNBA or college softball – it fails utterly even to address the question.

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    Well, that’s simple. The men’s sports are simply more watchable.

    The only ones in which the women’s variety is more exciting to watch is probably tennis. There are just too many fast serves in men’s tennis, and therefore too many aces, to make it interesting. Gymnastics and some other Olympic sports can probably make the same case. But team sports … forget it.

  • http://drdreadful.blogspot.com Dr Dreadful

    My wife would agree with you there, Matt. She loves watching football and the NBA, but doesn’t care for women’s basketball. She can’t really explain why, other than that she finds the men’s versions more exciting.

    Personally I find there’s much to appreciate in both genders’ pro sports. You just have to appreciate that because of physiology, women are going to approach basketball in a slightly different way than men. For example, they mostly can’t throw the ball as far or as fast as a man, so you’re less likely to see those last-second game-winning three-pointers from the halfway line, for instance.

    Also, I think a lot of the excitement factor comes from the crowd. Popularity has to be built, and men’s sports have at least a 50-year head start in most cases on their female counterparts. As more young women get into professional sports, I think the perception will slowly change. You make a good observation with regard to tennis, in which women have enjoyed parity or near-parity with men for a long time.

    There’s also something to be said for the women lagging behind the men as far as the development of their sports goes. For instance, I thoroughly enjoyed the women’s soccer World Cup a couple of summers ago. I remember thinking that the sports(wo)manship, the pace of play, the high scoring and the general way the tournament was played harked back to how the men’s game was 50 years ago.

  • http://www.futonreport.net/ Matthew T. Sussman

    I can’t entirely actuate my problem with women’s basketball, but when they make a big deal out of a simple little dunk, it makes me cringe. This may require its own article to sort out.

  • Heather Hogan

    Dr. Dreadful, I didn’t set out to tell you why I would rather watch men play sports than women play. I actually never mentioned that. I was just telling you why I am in awe of the NBA, NFL, and the MLB. Although, as long as we are on that subject I will tell you that I do not watch women’s sports. The reason is simple: see Sussman’s answer above! Women’s sports are simply just not that exciting to watch. I played sports, loved it, and was excited when I was on a court or field, but never watched other women play. As much as I hate to admit it, a woman and a man are built differently, and their strengths and weaknesses are not even comparable.

  • http://drdreadful.blogspot.com Dr Dreadful

    Heather,

    I get that, but the title of your article is misleading. Although I see that in the sidebar as I type this it’s advertised as ‘Why Women Love Watching Sports’, which is IMHO a much better title.

    I can’t argue with you or Matt with regard to women’s basketball as I’m not that fond of the game. However, I do thoroughly enjoy watching both men and women play soccer and tennis. Of course women approach these sports differently than men do, because their physiology compels them to. They can still do thrilling things on the court or the field. In fact, for my money the best soccer player in the world at the moment is a woman: Marta. I’m looking forward to watching her in the new women’s pro league next summer.

    I don’t see either gender’s game as being more or less exciting than the other’s; they’re just different. One might have to reeducate oneself a bit to appreciate that, but it’s worthwhile.

  • Heather Hogan

    Actually Dr. Dreadful, you are right on! They are just different, and it doesn’t make one better or worse. At the moment I just enjoy men’s sports a lot more!

  • valerie

    I don’t like watching women’s sports, and I’m a feminist…

  • Ray

    The way you have intelectualised the reasons why you like sports explains exactly why women will never be as into sports as men.

  • truth

    Women love watching Alpha Men