Turkish women's football issues and potential solutions


Turkish women's football issues and potential solutions

Turkish women's football issues and potential solutions_ichhori.com

From the percentage of participation to the inclusion of women on the managing boards of women's football federations, women's football has faced structural problems. How should we approach these difficulties?

Kzlar Sahada (Women on the Field), a social enterprise founded in Turkey in 2013, aims to promote gender equality through football by working with a range of stakeholders, including football clubs and associations, public, private, and civil organisations. It does this by developing and implementing a number of programmes to empower women and children in society against discrimination.

Finding the problems

Kzlar Sahada conducted a Female Footballer Needs Analysis Survey in 2020 to evaluate all facets of women's football in Turkey in order to determine the needs in the sport. Only 7% of Turkey's female population has a licence to participate in sports, and only 1% of those are licenced, female football players. Women's football was already lagging behind men's football at that time, and the epidemic has made things worse. When analysing the survey findings, we ran into a number of obstacles, including:

     Irregular role models

·        Strict career objectives

·       The fragility of long-term economic viability

·   Women's future careers in football are not an option, and there is a lack of knowledge regarding menstruation.

·      Discrimination against women's football cannot be eliminated.

·     The athlete cannot discuss issues with the coach 8. Goals are used to determine success

The pandemic's increased pressures

In addition to this, lockdowns and quarantines restricted mobility, especially for women and female athletes. Furthermore, just 34% of women participated in the labour force in 2019. Recent estimates indicate that the epidemic has worsened the situation even further, bringing the percentage down to barely 30%. Additionally, research indicates that women are dismissed more frequently than men. In addition, domestic violence has escalated and household chore balances have changed. The lack of opportunities for female footballers to play and take part in organisations at any level adds to the gender discrepancy on the pitch. Women's football is an amateur sport; hence they are unable to make as much money as an amateur or professional male football player.

We had some fascinating answers when we inquired about post-football career ambitions, personal growth, and expectations for a football career. Female athletes, including those in Turkey's top league, wished to work as physical education instructors in classrooms or as club football coaches. Their major priority was that. Due to a shortage of resources in the women's football industry, even if they are coaches in clubs, they will require financial help from their families or find other work to finance their coaching careers.

Football has the lowest percentage of licenced female players of any sport—1%—according to the Sports and Physical Activity Association for Women's Report from 2021—with only 1% of licenced female football players. 67 women make up the boards of directors of sports federations, which amounts to a mere 7.37 per cent of the total membership. The sports federations that don't have women on their boards of directors include those that play women's football. Making progress in a field where women are hardly represented or actively involved seems unattainable. Women's football in Turkey has a long way to go in the post-pandemic era.

An opportunity to succeed

Turkey has the chance to change both the playing field and the management of women's football. Young people in the 15–24 age range made up 15.3% of the overall population, per data from the Turkish Statistical Institute. This rate is greater than the rates for young people in 27 of the nations that make up the European Union. Females and girls make up 48.7% of these young people.

Football fans are expected to boost the economy by £1.2 billion during the Women's UEFA 2022 European Championships, according to the Women's EURO 2022 Spending Report. The financial statement and the ratings may also have a natural link. According to a FIFA report, compared to the 2015 edition of the competition, more people watched the FIFA Women's World Cup France 2019 on digital platforms. Additionally, it should be mentioned that sponsorships have grown. By the end of 2021, Barclays will have invested twice as much in women's and girls' football in the UK according to a new three-year, £30 million sponsorship agreement the two parties reached.

How do we go about it?

Women football players fundamentally need knowledge of various topics. Our survey's findings indicate that female football players need to learn more about nutrition, menstruation, sports injuries, relationships with coaches and their teams, personal growth, and psychology.

Kzlar Sahada created the athlete development programme by taking into account all the factors and the development requirements as expressed by the athletes themselves. The five components of the program—financial, social, physiological, cultural, and physical empowerment—are its foundation. 30 per cent of participants in the training programme did not know the reasons for the gender imbalance in sports prior to training, according to a survey of participants following the programme. 98 per cent of the participants said that the topic of gender equality in sports caught their attention after the training sessions. Furthermore, 96 per cent of the participants said that following the training, they began to feel more confident about topics like career management, which is not taught in Turkish schools. 88 per cent of the participants said they could view the brand concept from a wider viewpoint following the training when it came to personal brand management.

In order to attain gender equality in women's football in Turkey, there is still much work to be done. Football is necessary to reshape women's participation in football and increase their on-field accomplishments. Better outcomes are attained when specific issues are discovered, the programme is created in accordance, and many methods to a solution are used. Women's football in Turkey needs a logical and long-term plan that adheres to the needs analysis.

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