By: Hans Themistode
It’s a man’s world.
That has always been the phrase that many have lived by. The meaning behind it is simple. Men rule just about everything. Especially sports, and boxing in particular. Men receive much higher pay for the same sort of work, and they are also given the type of recognition that a woman can only dream of.
If you believe that phrase is still relevant in today’s day and age, then you are living in the stone ages. Behind every successful man, has always been a strong woman. To take things even further, men are beginning to take a backseat to women.
The sport of boxing has always been dominated by men. Truthfully, it still is. Men take control of the headlines and rise to the top at a much faster rate than their female counterparts.
Fair? Of course not. But there is no time to simply sit by and complain about it. Instead, it’s time for action.
Everglast, one of the foremost brands in boxing, is leading the way with their new move entitled: First Is Strong. The ad highlights women who have created their own path through the boxing world.
See, it’s easy to follow the footsteps of those who came before you. Watch the blueprint that is already laid in front of you to your own success. But it’s something different entirely when there is no blueprint. No roadmap to follow. No footsteps to imitate.
What the hell are you supposed to then?
You could always quit. Make the assumption that it’s impossible. Maybe the path that you’ve decided to go on is a bit too difficult and it’s time to turn back. Or, you can keep moving forward and make your own path. Build your own way and become the blueprint that others will use when you’re long gone.
That is exactly what former world Featherweight champion Heather Hardy has done. Along with boxing promoter Kathy Duva and journalist Kris Herndon, to name a few.
So how special are these three women in particular? Well, Kathy Duva is one of the most successful boxing promoters in the world. Not an easy thing to do considering how male dominated her profession is. The hard work she’s put in over the years has paid off as she will become just the third female ever to be inducted into the hall of fame this coming June. For male’s who are looking to be a part of her team, don’t even bother. She currently has an all female executive board and her daughter is set to take over once her mother decides to walk away.
As for Heather Hardy, she won the Featherweight world title back in 2018, but that was only the tip of the iceberg.
Hardy became the first female boxer to fight at Barclay Center, in Brooklyn, New York in 2014. She also became the first woman to fight on a national television broadcast as well. Those accomplishments, coupled with her outside of the ring battles including homelessness and sexual abuse, highlights the sort of grit that she has and why she become so successful.
Much like Heather Hardy, Kris Herndon dealt with her own sexual abuse. The trauma may have left her scarred, but certainly not broken.
To sum it all up, these women have fought their way to make it here today.
Simply honoring these women would be more than enough. Well, maybe for anyone else, but not for Everlast. The company has recently launched a campaign to have the word “female” removed from the WBC and WBO sanctioning bodies.
The goal is simple. Forget about genders and just acknowledge women as champions. So far, the WBC has agreed.
“The WBC joins @Everlast campaign in the quest for gender equality,” said the WBC via their Instagram page. “The World Boxing Council has always distinguished itself as a pioneer in regulating boxing and fighting for human rights throughout the entire range of the sports world.”
“For this very reason we adhere to the struggle of women around the world in the search for equity, as well as the various campaigns that have been launched to end discrimination and abuse, and we join the Everlast brand campaign, “ #changethebelt “making the decision to immediately modify our emblematic belt by removing the word “Female” and thus maintain the status of champion regardless of gender; call Champion a Champion.”
With the WBC already onboard with the current change, the ball is now in the court of the WBO.