Course Correction

Course Correction: A story of rowing and Resilience in the wake of Title IX, by Ginny Gilder (part owner of the Seattle Storm!), is the fourth book about crew I’ve recently read. I’m getting the impression that crew is a sport of how much misery can you put your body through in order to give yourself a chance of winning a few races a year. So, not for me!

Gilder mentions that in early 20th century most women’s colleges had some competitive sports for women, but in the 1920s there was “a culture rebellion against the concept of the ‘independent woman’ slowed progress….the concerns that engagement in sports promoted ‘mannish’ characteristics and produced women who would be too strong and unable to submit to their husbands’ authority….For the next four decades, educators and parents viewed female involvement in competitive sports as both a health and a moral hazard; women’s colleges across the country downgraded their competitive intercollegiate offerings to intramural status, focusing on socializing and fun,  not winning.”  (pg 93)

(I want to learn more about that.)

More quotes:

“Unfortunately, you have to develop a personal and deeply familiar relationship with failure to become great at anything. Losing is the most effective way to inspire improvement and generate success.” (pg 89-90)

“Sport is one among many human endeavors, one possible path in the search for meaning, self-expression, and purpose. It is intimately personal an universally important, this business of striving beyond one’s limits, of aspiring to perfection and inevitably falling short, failing, and risking again…”  (pg 132)

“There comes a moment in every stroke when it’s time to stop pulling.”  (pg 201)

Hats off to Ms. Gilder, often she was cut from a team for not being good enough, she fought many personal battles, and was able to eventually earn a silver medal at the Olympics.

 

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