On Thursday, March 18, 2021, Stanford performance coach Ali Kershner posted side-by-side photos of the weight training facilities available at the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments.
While the men have access to a full weight room, the women are currently making do with dumbbells and yoga mats.
After Kershner’s photos went viral on social media, the NCAA issued a statement, explaining that “limited space” had played a role in the lack of women’s equipment and that the organization is “actively working to enhance existing resources.”
This is the NCAA men’s basketball tournament versus women’s basketball tournament bubble set up.
— Darren M. Haynes (@DarrenMHaynes) March 18, 2021
While discrepancies like these are not new in women’s sports – remember when the 2015 Women’s World Cup was played on artificial turf? – the juxtaposition that college basketball provides is important.
Because the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments are put on by the same organization, follow the same format, and take place at the same time, there is a direct comparison between the two events.
— NCAA Women’s Basketball (@ncaawbb) March 18, 2021
And sadly, the disparate weight rooms aren’t the only example of the way the NCAA treats the men’s and women’s tournaments differently.
— Natasha Cloud (@T_Cloud4) March 18, 2021