These women are inspiring. In March, seven women ambassadors from cycling-apparel company Rapha set out to ride the 2014 Amgen Tour of California in reverse - 700 miles in seven days. The Amgen Tour of California is a man's race. Just like the Tour de France, the Giro D'Italia, and the Vuelta A Espana. Like most professional sports, women have been treated differently from the beginning. Huge improvements have been made in some sports, including tennis where men and women are paid equally, but there's a long way to go. These seven women set out to ride a course men ride every year and although they didn't ride it like the professionals do, they rode as a team, supporting each other along the way and sharing their love of the sport. And yes, proving women can do it to. Watch the film of their journey by Jordan Clark Haggard and Nicholas Haggard:
Its astonishing the way men and women are treated differently as athletes. Division 1A head coaches for women's teams receive an average salary of $850,400 while men's head coaches receive an average $1,783,100. Total prize money of the LPGA tour tops at $50 million; the PGA tour tops at $256 million. WNBA players receive a max salary of $89,000; NBA players receive a max salary of $15 million.
But good things are happening. After a long battle, women's ski jumping was included in the 2013 Sochi Olympics making the 2013 Winter Olympic Games a gender-equal event as all men and women competed in the same sports. There is an incredibly inspiring documentary about getting women's ski jumping into the Olympics called Ready To Fly. Watch the trailer below (then watch it on Netflix or on iTunes):
Thankfully, we have some inspiring leaders like the great Billie Jean King who founded the Women's Sports Foundation, which is dedicated to advancing the lives of girls and women through sports and activities. This foundation is an amazing go to spot for support, information, and programs for women athletes. Check them out here. We have a long way to go, but we've also come quite the distance. Every day things are getting better for girls in sports thanks to these inspiring women.