The Instigator
Pro (for)
7 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

Women and Contact Sports

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/31/2011 Category: Sports
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,650 times Debate No: 14629
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (10)
Votes (1)




Resolved: High schools and colleges in the United States should establish and promote women’s teams in contact sports, including football and wrestling.

1. If a debater forfeits a round, he/she forfeits all 7 points and the debate.
2. It is assumed that males shall also participate in contact sports, the argument that all contact sports should be eliminated is not allowed.
3. No semantics or unreasonable interpretations of the resolution/arguments.
4. No new arguments in the last round.
5. Sources may be posted in the comments section.

Young men in the United States have been competing in contact sports for centuries. These sports promote physical fitness and foster an attitude of healthy competition and a drive for success. As I will go into later, there are a huge number of benefits to participating in sports, especially for children and young adults.
Unfortunately, women have limited opportunities to participate in many of the most popular and physically demanding sports. There are virtually no women’s football teams, and females comprise about 2% of high school wrestlers. [1] Only a few colleges offer women’s wrestling teams and there are virtually no women’s football teams. [2] This restriction on athletic participation is unjustifiably discriminatory.
The United States has a dismal record on allowing women to participate in sports. As today, most of the justifications for why women were not allowed to participate were based on false assumptions. As a runner, I have read of the example of the women’s 800 meters multiple times. The event was cut from the Olympics until 1960 because of the exhausted state of the finishers. [3] Of course, it is madness to assume that at the end of a race at the Olympic level the finishers wouldn’t be exhausted. Despite restrictions on women’s distance running, it now regularly takes a time close to 1:55 to win an Olympic medal in the women’s 800. The doubts about the physical ability to women to participate in this competition were completely unfounded.
With the following arguments, I think I will be able to prove that the lack of opportunities afforded to women is undesirable, unnecessary, and unacceptable.

Argument One: Sports Benefit Women.
Studies have consistently shown that sports are beneficial to children. They increase self confidence, teach kids life lessons about winning and losing, and require cooperation and social skills. Many sports, especially football and wrestling, have complex rules and require strategic thinking in order to have success. Sports also increase physical fitness, reduce weight problems, and improve body image, especially force girls. [4] Therefore, it is only reasonable the both boys and girls should be encouraged to participate in sports throughout their time in school, and colleges should allow everyone equal opportunities to continue participation in these sports if they offer them.

Argument Two: Sports and Sexism
Football is entirely a male sport, and the players are encouraged from the sidelines by cheerleading squads comprised almost entirely of women. The attitude behind this is exactly what it suggests: males are the performers who participate in the real competition; women may cheer them on from the sidelines but they are never real participants. The glorification of male exploits and the delegation of women to the position of observers send a very overt and very real message about what the social expectations are for men and women. These attitudes are irrational and ultimately reduce the subconscious views that women have for themselves; they can only be harmful and should be challenged rather than encouraged.
The existence of “powder-puff” sports cements this idea. [5] The female substitution of ‘real’ men’s sports is given a silly name and softened-up rules appropriate for those who cannot handle the rigor of a serious competition. However they are played off, these competitions are little more then a mockery of female athletes and the competence of women in general. Athletics should elevate, not insult, the physical prowess of human beings regardless of sex.

Argument Three: Appeal of Women’s Sports
All indicators seem to suggest that participation by women traditionally male dominated sports is increasing. The number of girls participating in high school wrestling has risen dramatically. [6] This participation is no doubt serious decreased by the fact that women do not have their own teams. This places them in constant unfair competition, and some people discourage them from participating because they consider it inappropriate for women to compete with men in contact sports. Both of these problems could be remedied by offering women the opportunity to join female-only teams for these sports. There is good reason to believe that these sports would attract a significant number of participants and rapidly increase in popularity.

Argument Four: Concerns about the Physical Limitations of Women Are Unjustified
If women participate against other women in contact sports, there is no reason to suggest there would be a higher rate of injury than experienced by men in these same sports. Because women are smaller and physically weaker than men, they are less able to cause harm. If anything, women are more physically resilient relative to their size and strength than men. I would suggest that men are more likely to hurt one another in athletic competitions because resistance to injury does not scale linearly with strength. [7]
Many of the assumptions about the risks to women posed by these sports assume that they would participate against men. Well, even the fastest woman in the world would not be a serious contender in the men’s 800 meters at the Olympics. That does not mean that women cannot compete against each other in track and field.

It would be highly beneficial for high schools and colleges to establish programs in contact sports for women and encourage them to participate in these programs. They are known advantages to participating in sports for people of all ages, and it is especially important for children and youths. Treating women on an equal ground in sports is furthermore an extension of an acceptance of women as equal competitors elsewhere in life. Women may not be able to fairly compete against men due to physical differences between the sexes, but their sports should not be treated as below those even of boys in primary school.
Sources in Comments



I make the argument that women and contact sports should not be together.
Your argument
1. sports benefit women. But so does excercising in the gym? If sports are the only way of getting fit, then Every girl should be a fat slob by now .
2. Well, allowing women to play sports isn't giong to fix that. Women playing sports will get rid of al the sexism and sexist thoughts in the world? Puh-lease. And why would you want to erase it in the first place? You don't say WHY it's bad. I know it's bad, but you shouldn't just assume it's bad in an argument. There's so many sexism in so many different places: hospitals, workplaces, and etc. ONE THING isn't going to fix it. If you can fix every sexism, I'm all ears.
3. I want to see your evidence on that. But not really arguing that until later.
4. Later

Here are some bad sides. :(
1. Potential lawsuit from the parents is a big problem. Grape might say that girls have no right to be discriminated against, but guess what? Most everyone thinks girls are fragile. So, if girls start getting hurt, their parents will sue the school for letting the girls get injured by allowing man sports. There are lots of crazy parents out there, let me tell you. One parent sued the school for letting her son read "The Brave New World"! LOL
2. Also, another bad side is imbalance in menstrual cycles and hormones. girls may be physically equal to men. That doesn't mean their exactly the same. They have periods unlike boys, and did you know that if girls played sports like that really hard, and did weight training their menstrual cycle will get all whack? reason why is because their hormone is unbalanced because of all the sports. Is it really worth it?If a girl becomes puzzled because she is becoming "masculinized" because of weight training, and loses period because of that, who's to blame? The school. More lawsuits.

But if School starts teaching girls about what could happen to her body if they start doing sports, then they won't want to play sports anymore, making your argument 3 invalid.

Vote for me because I argued against all Pro's arguments very goodly.
Debate Round No. 1


My opponent's account has been closed, so I am going to take that as a forfeiture of the debate. Here is a quick rebuttal to my opponent:

1. Sports and exercise both benefit women. Just because sports are not the only way to get fit doesn't mean they aren't an excellent way to. Sports are often much more mentally stimulating and physically challenging than simple exercise.

2. I never said that allowing women to play certain sports would eliminate all sexist. I argued that the current state of affairs is founded on and perpetuates sexism.

3. I provided evidence to support this claim in my source. Many of my other sources implicitly point to the truth of this assertion.

4. This argument is basically dropped, but it is alluded to in my opponent's counterarguments.


1. Any athlete's parent, regardless of the sex of the athlete, can sue because of an injury. Girls already play sports that have high injury rates; girls cross country has the highest injury rate of any sport [1]. In any case, most such lawsuits would be frivilous because parents are usually required to sign a waiver indicating that they will not hold the school liable for injuries their children suffer in athletic competitions.

2. Hormonal inbalance is not a normal result of physical activity for women. This is generally only a problem for those with improper diets. My opponent's source does not back up this claim.


My opponent's counterarguments are ridiculous and frivilous objections that do not have the slighest basis in reality. My case is absolutely unscathed.




Dumbchic forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


As per Rule 1, my opponent has forfeited the debate anf all 7 points.


Dumbchic forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by jeffembe 3 years ago
Several girls sports should be changed to "officially" contact sports - Lacrosse and Ice Hockey. I'm talking about girls teams - not coed.

If a girl can play a "male" contact sport, they should be allowed to...

I don't think there is any need to create girls football teams....
Posted by Grape 7 years ago
Source 1 states that the number of girls participating in wrestling had increased by about 500% in the decade between 1997 and 2007.
Posted by lovelife 7 years ago

I think they should.

Also con I wouldn't expect to win. Your a girl and debate is a guy thing so before you get all hurt because your logic isn't as strong just get in the kitchen, and make me a sandwich.
Girls shouldn't even be allowed to debate because they might not be good at it and then they would whine to their parents who would sue the school for letting them debate.
Or math, math is something guys are almost always better at, it frustrates me so the fact that not only the school lets me do that, but they make me should be plenty of grounds to sue, don't you think?

Sorry I just found it funny.
Posted by Dumbchic 7 years ago
Oh I didn't see the sources cited at the bottom.
I want to point something out source 1 which you used for argument 3.
It doesn't say any statistics. Very ambiguous. I can point to genius level prodigies that have been showing up recently and say that intelligence in humanity is increasing. But that's just whacko :P
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
Change the indefinite voting period to one or two months and obey the 8000 character limit and I'll accept the challenge.
Posted by 1stLordofTheVenerability 7 years ago
I think boys and girls should combine in contact sports. :P jk
Posted by Danielle 7 years ago
Haha the very first thesis paper I've ever written was in the 8th grade -- "Sexism in sports inhibits the self-esteem and personal development of girls" or some shiz like that.
Posted by tornshoe92 7 years ago
lol I have a hard enough time watching my university's women's basketball team and I get paid to do so!
Posted by Grape 7 years ago

also (left that out)
[6] same as 1, I messed up
[7] (there is technically nudity on this site but if it's a real violation then I'm the Pope)
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Deistdude90 7 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro made it clear in round 1 about forfeiting. He also laid out a better case ignoring the forfeited rounds.