The majority of women’s professional sports have historically trailed behind their male counterparts in terms of popularity.
Women’s sports have struggled to generate the same revenues as the male versions, leading to many elite female athletes feeling downtrodden.
However, changes in attitude are helping to create a positive vibe across many women’s sports, although there is still a lot of work to be done.
Read on as we look how women’s sport is enjoying an upsurge in popularity.
USWNT leading the way
The United States’ Women’s soccer team have long been pioneers for promoting awareness of their version of the sport.
Their recent victory over the Netherlands at the 2019 World Cup highlighted their ability and pleased many punters who used the latest sports odds on this site to back USWNT for winning the World Cup a second time.
However, they are also famed for their strength off the field and are currently embroiled in a gender discrimination row with the US federation that looks set to turn into a bitter battle.
The players are suing the federation, claiming it is unfair that the men’s team are paid more despite generating lower revenues.
With Megan Rapinoe also going head-to-head with President Donald Trump over his views on diversity, it is clear that the USWNT are leading the way for women in sport.
The impact has been felt in Europe as well, with women’s football in UK and elsewhere on continental Europe thriving (European champions Lyon being the perfect example) and the gap narrowing between European teams and US.
Women’s cricket gaining momentum
England’s victory over India in the final of the 2017 World Cup felt like a watershed moment for women’s cricket globally.
It was estimated that more than 180 million people watched the Women’s World Cup worldwide, highlighting its growing popularity.
The women’s game had struggled for airtime alongside its male counterpart, but giving it the space to breathe in its own right has helped the sport to overcome those challenges.
The 2020 Women’s T20 World Cup is the next upcoming big event and has once again been kept away from anything major in the men’s game.
It is hoped that Melbourne Cricket Ground will attract 100,000 fans for the final – a figure that would have previously been unthinkable.
Rousey sparks UFC women’s boom
Ronda Rousey’s rise to fame in the UFC broke down barriers and created a pathway for other female fighters to follow in her footsteps.
She was the UFC’s first female champion, the first woman inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame and the first female MMA star to truly cross over into public consciousness.
Her shock defeat against Holly Holm ultimately broke her spirit in the UFC, but she has been able to cash in on her popularity in professional wrestling.
However, her legacy in the UFC is clear for everyone to see, with women’s bouts now regularly included at the top of the card.
Whatever Rousey does in the future it is impossible to underestimate the impact she made on women’s sport on a global scale.