Athletic body stereotypes in the academic training of students in the Physical Activity and Sport Sciences

Carmen Rodriguez Fernandez, Jonathan Ospina Betancurt, Joaquin Piedra de la Cuadra

Abstract

In the past years, despite advances in recent decades in terms of rights and equal opportunities between women and men, the male and female body stereotypes have not disappeared; on the contrary, they have continued to exist at an even greater scale. However, there are no current studies analyzing this phenomenon in terms of the perceptions held by future professionals in the field of physical education and sport in Spain. In this paper, we have tried to examine the stereotypes of gender that exist in the substructures of beliefs of students of physical and sports activity science in regard to the body of women in athletics. The study took place in three Andalusian public universities currently offering studies in the field of athletics (2009-2010, N= 424). Data collection was conducted through a questionnaire completed online. The analysis of data was conducted by descriptive statistics. Results show the existence of a stereotyped conception, both overt and covert, against the stated objective. Gender stereotypes detected on the woman's body on training in track and field are mainly located in physical appearance and performance, manifestations of gender in terms of the woman's body and on different events that took place. Their need to maintain beauty standards, brought under established social control, emanates from these perceptions.

Keywords

Stereotypes; Gender; Athletics; Academic training

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.14198/jhse.2016.111.06