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Gender equality in sports was questioned and challenged throughout history. Moreover, both genders have faced irresistible barriers when trying to participate in a sport that was considered  improper for their gender. Despite a huge progress related to gender issues, most people still do not accept women’s participation in such traditionally male sports as boxing and bodybuilding. There is a common stereotype of what is considered "normal" in sports for a specific gender. As a result, female athletes in college, for example, receive less financial support from the government than male ones.

During ancient times in Greece females were not even allowed to watch sport competitions. Ancient Olympic Games were designated for male athletes only, whereas there was an independent competition, called Heraea Games, for female athletes. Women started participating in the modern Olympic Games from 1900 year, which is relatively not long ago in terms of the entire sports history. At the beginning of female participation in Olympics, there were only few events where they were allowed to take part.

In general, female sports were invented as less physically intensive male sports’ variants. Thus "netball was developed out of basketball and softball out of baseball". The number of professional female athletes increased during World War I and World War II and women got an opportunity to get involved in wider range of sport styles and activities. In the middle of the 20th century some countries, like Germany and USSR, developed various female athletic programs, increasing their legacy and technique. Majority of the best female athletes of that time were from USSR or other communist countries. "In 1972 women's sports in the United States got a boost when the Congress passed the Title IX legislation". This document prohibited any kind of gender discrimination in public schools, allowing females to take part  in various sport programs equally to the males. Another document, "The Amateur Sports Act, passed in 1978, requires the United States Olympic Committee and its National Governing Bodies to operate in a nondiscriminatory manner for each sport".

However, a number of issues, related to the female sports both in the US and other countries still remain unresolved. For example, in modern countries like Saudi Arabia or Brunei women are not even allowed to participate in any sport events or competitions. Oman and the United Arab Emirates sent their first female athletes to the Olympics only in 2008. Among all Muslim countries, the most female athletes are from Tunisia.

Nowadays there are still both women-only and men-only sport events, with men-only ones having the significant part in the overall amount. For example, synchronized swimming and rhythmic gymnastics are considered to be exceptionally female kinds of sports, while weightlifting, boxing and wrestling are the men-only ones. However, Executive Board of International Olympic Committee allowed to include female boxing into the program of Olympic games in 2012. In addition, women basketball, ice hockey teams as well as female weightlifting atheletes are no longer considered to be unusual or outstanding in the modern American or European society, as they were considered several decades earlier.

Code: Sample20

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