How many women are there making decisions about women’s sports? Why is it still easier for a man to earn money when he practices a discipline? The Asturian athletes gathered yesterday at the Asturian Press Club of LA NUEVA ESPAÑA claim their space and assure that they want to be more than a fashion. “We need more visibility and support, that things are easier for us,” they said.
Miriam Cortina, player of the Lobas Global Atac Oviedo (Handball); María Suárez, journalist and representative of Real Oviedo Femenino (soccer); Isabel Moreno, Oviedo Badminton player; Tamara Labra, AD Universidad de Oviedo (basketball) and Toña Is Piñera, former U-17 women’s national soccer team, who acted as moderator, highlighted the hard road that girls and women who want to dedicate themselves to sport still have to travel, mentioning especially to how difficult it is still to reconcile competition with studies.
“It is true that women’s sport has more presence in the media, but it is still not enough,” said Miriam Cortina, who plays in the highest category of handball and who called attention to how difficult it was for her to maintain sports activity when she was in college. “At some point in my career they called me from the national team and it was very difficult for me to change a final exam… I have lost many exams so as not to give up training sessions and matches,” she acknowledged. “My sport is a minority, but in recent years the public has increased a lot and there are more girls, partly because of that increasing visibility,” stressed Isabel Moreno, who has Carolina Marín among her references. “My problem has been that I gave too much importance to sports, to the detriment of studies, and there came a time when I had to focus to take the courses,” she said. Tamara Labra, a college basketball representative, started playing motivated by her parents, who also play basketball. “In Spain, sport is not prioritized in the university as in the United States, where everything is easy, and things are even harder when you are a woman,” said the player.
María Suárez confessed that at home they did not support her when she decided that she wanted to play soccer. “You couldn’t ask for more of the pioneers, you have done enough for all of us,” she said, addressing Toña Is, a benchmark for women’s football in Spain, who has led Pachuca Femenil in the First Women’s Division of Mexico and from 2015 to 2019 she was the women’s national soccer team under-17 and the first coach of the Federation.
“In ten years we have experienced very rapid changes; now I work so that the girls do not have to give up anything and there are no obstacles,” said María Suárez, who does not forget the two goals that were put up in the garden of her house to dissuade her from playing in Modern Oviedo.
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