For years, women’s boxing has been the only sport not included in the Olympics. However, this will no longer be the case at the 2012 Olympics in London.
According to usaboxing.org, the national governing body of amateur Olympic-style boxing, women’s boxing was officially added to the 2012 Olympics Games August 13, 2009.
According to an article in the New York Times, a sport must be approved by the International Olympic Committee. However, because boxing is already a sport in the Olympics, women’s boxing doesn’t need the full approval of the I.O.C. to be able to compete.
According to the usaboxing website, boxing was the only summer sport in the Olympics without a female counterpart. “Female boxers will compete at three weights in London, flyweight (106 – 112 pounds), lightweight (123 – 132 pounds) and middleweight (152 – 165 pounds), with 12 boxers boxing in each of three divisions,” according to the usaboxing website.
The website also stated that with the addition of women’s boxing, one weight class in the men’s division will have to be removed.
24 female boxers are set to go to the trials February 13 – 19 at Northern Quest Resort in Airway Heights, Wash., according to the usaboxing website.
According to the usaboxing website, the International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) petitioned the I.O.C. to include women’s boxing at the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games. Over 120 countries worldwide participate in women’s boxing.
“Women can box if they want; this is the 21st century,” said Brockport student Jon Coffta.
According to an article by the Associated Press, the AIBA is looking to make female boxers wear miniskirts at the 2012 Olympic Games. “The policy will be scrutinized again when London stages Olympic boxing test events Nov. 24-27 at the ExCeL arena,” the article stated. According to the article, Ireland’s three-time world boxing champion Katie Taylor said “I don’t even wear miniskirts on a night out, so I definitely won’t be wearing miniskirts in the ring.”
“Women should be able to do any sport that men compete in,” said Brockport student Amanda Cochrane. “They should not have to wear miniskirts. This is completely sexist.”
“That is like forcing men to have beards if they are going to fight so that they can be distinguished from the females. If people are truly interested, they will read the fighters name to determine their sex.”
Brockport student Erika Orman shared a similar viewpoint to Cochrane.
“For me, it’s the justification behind female boxers wearing skirts that is ridiculous,” Orman said. “It doesn’t make any sense! Are the male boxers going to be so confused when they see a female boxer wearing shorts, that they start fighting her on accident? No. I understand why men and women wear different types of clothing in certain sports, but it should be a personal choice.”
The addition of women’s boxing to the 2012 Olympic Games is a large step toward equality in sports. Although the addition forced a men’s weight class to be dropped, there appears to be a large amount of support for women boxers.
As for female boxers fighting in miniskirts – the decision remains to be seen.