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Being A “Woman in Sports”

There’s been a lot of negative attention toward women in sports recently. Whether it be because of an outfit the wore, the way they voted for awards, or for something completely uncalled for, women across the field are being unfairly scrutinized. Regardless of these uncalled for smear campaigns, it’s time to talk about what it means to me to be a woman in sports. 

 

First of all, I am Jess. Hi, nice to meet you, or if you’re a returning reader, thanks for checking in.  I’ve been writing about sports for three years and my focus is primarily hockey. In the beginning, I feared sharing my hockey pieces. I had hyper fixated on the idea that men would tear me apart on hockey twitter because I’m a woman and haven’t played a shift in my life. 

 

I could retire if I had a dollar for every time a man said my hockey knowledge is hot, asked me for players’ names in a trade, or said something along the lines of I know a lot about the sport for a girl. Shut up. Just shut up. Do you quiz your buddies like that? Do you question every guy you see wearing sports merchandise? Why? What is the point? I know it’s a talking piece, but you can certainly start a conversation without assuming I only like hockey for the “hot guys.”

It used to bother me a lot. I felt the need to prove myself to those kinds of people. For what? Why did I need to exert all this energy into a conversation? I write about sports for a source of income. Of course, I’m going to know enough about them to carry a conversation. I won’t be a token. I won’t be there to fill a quota. I’m Jess. I know sports. 

What’s been eating away at me is the way people feel the need harp on someone’s appearance. Women can’t wear anything without being deemed too sexual or unflattering. Being in the game feels like a double-edged sword sometimes but at the end of the day, covering my favorite sport and meeting life long friends and connections is worth it. 

 

Who am I? I am Jess, a woman who covers sports. Please don’t ever assume I’m here because I slept my way there or have some sort of alternative motive. I want to inspire other young people to chase their dreams. I want to write and produce content that fans across the league enjoy and come back to. I am more than just a woman in sports. I know I’m worthy of every position I take. I’m out here working harder than some men in the media. If you want to call out mediocrity let’s start with men perpetuating these diaglogs. 

-Jess Belmosto @jessicabelmosto

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