The lingerie football league womens bikinis sale all-star tour at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre in Australia.
It’s an idea as old as time. If you want to get a man’s attention, enroll the help of a scantily clad woman. It was probably what Mitch Mortaza, the founder of womens bikinis sale lingerie football, was thinking when he spotted a gap in the market while watching womens bikinis sale the Super Bowl – you’ve got men playing American football, you’ve got cheerleaders in skimpy outfits, what would happen if you combined the two? I know, women in skimpy outfits playing football! Heck, forget the outfits, let’s just have them play in their underwear. And he did.
Lingerie football had its first outing in 2004 as a pay-per-view event at half-time during the Super Bowl.
Fourteen women in bras and knickers (plus requisite helmet and shoulder padding) took to the field in a seven-aside game. The match lasted half an hour and one team had a resounding victory, though I doubt anyone was really looking at the score. From such humble beginnings, a league was born. The womens bikinis sale lingerie football league now has 20 regular season games, broadcast on MTV2 in the US. Success has meant it is now looking to expand its borders, launching leagues in Australia – where it is currently on a promotional tour – Canada and Europe.
The sport’s popularity has brought with it a whole host of criticism. There have been the expected, and valid, calls of gross sexism. As Mortaza himself proclaims, “first and foremost, you have to be beautiful” to be in the league. And then the question arises whether it should even be considered a sport. At the end of the day, no one is really going to take a sport that has “lingerie” in its title seriously.
It’s no news. Women’s sport has had a long and continual battle to be taken seriously. Women’s tennis, for example, has struggled to be viewed on an equal footing to the men’s game for years. But when a tennis player such as Anna Kournikova garnered more attention for her looks than her sporting ability, that got sponsors and marketers thinking. Her success off the court now means most female players know that in order to womens bikinis sale win the big sponsorship packages, they have to pay attention to not only their game but their appearance as well. And so they have: the Williams sisters have invited much controversy for their outfits both on and off the court and players such as Maria Sharapova and the current number one, Victoria Azarenka, have posed in their bikinis for men’s magazines. This ploy works: female tennis players are some of the highest-earning athletes around.
But it’s not all about the money. Beach volleyball was once a sport people knew little about before its debut at the Sydney Olympics in 2000. It probably remains a sport the public knows little about, except that it involves fit women in bikinis hitting a ball over a net. This fact alone has made it one of the most popular sports at the Olympics. A relaxation of womens bikinis sale uniform rules for the sport, allowing women to cover-up more, has been introduced for the first time for the London Olympics, but top players say they’ll be sticking to their bikinis. Many men sighed in relief.
And so it comes down to this – what will make men watch. Men, as everyone seems to have decided, are by and large the biggest consumers of sport. Any sport, except women’s – unless, they are good-looking and/or under-dressed. While the men’s soccer league in America can afford to have the likes of David Beckham playing in one of womens bikinis sale its teams, the women’s soccer league has been cancelled. A protracted legal battle and a lack of interest from sponsors and audiences alike meant the league was struggling. If the women don bikinis or lingerie, perhaps their fortunes may turn around? I for one really hope they never have to resort to that.
Back to the lingerie football league – should we support it? The answer is not an easy one. More women need womens bikinis sale to be encouraged into sport, especially those with the talent, desire and drive to become an athlete. If their kit makes us uncomfortable, perhaps it is our problem, not theirs. But on the other hand, a dangerous precedent is being set, with more and more sportswomen feeling the pressure to get their womens bikinis sale clothes off in order to succeed, at least financially. And this is where marketers and punters alike need to act – making it clear that it is talent, rather than looks, that will ultimately get rewarded.