The NFL is just around the corner, with almost 184 million NFL fans today who are obsessed with the event. It is one of the most anticipated leagues in America, with dozens of platforms streaming it worldwide. As of July 2022, the NFL has 24.9M followers on Instagram and 30.5M followers on Twitter.
But how much are women actually into the NFL and other sports?
In May 2022, statista.com surveyed 2210 US respondents – 1142 female and 1068 male. The study’s primary purpose was to determine the level of interest among the two genders with a simple question: “In general, would you describe yourself as an avid fan, a casual fan, or not a fan of each of the following? NFL football.”
21% of the female population described themselves as an avid fan, 35% as a casual fan, and 44% as not a fan at all. On the other hand, 46% of the male participants were avid fans, 30% were casual fans, and just 24% were not NFL fans.
This research will lead us to an interesting discussion – why are women less engaged in sports than men? In another study, also conducted by Statista.com, we can clearly see that only 13% of women in the US are avid sports fans, whereas 39% of the male respondents consider themselves avid fans.
What is the reason women are less interested in sports in general?
We wanted to dig deeper and find out why that is so. Research about Sex Differences in Sports Interest and Motivation by the American Psychological Association discovered that the US male population spends approximately twice as much time watching, discussing, and seeking information about sports compared to the female population.
It is also noted that people generally prefer to watch sporting events of individuals of the same gender and that the lack of these events might be the answer as to why women are less interested in sports.
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However, although 40% of all the sports players are female, only 4% get featured in the newspapers or various shows, indicating that the media coverage of females is concerning. It is almost the same as it used to be 30 years ago.
In the other findings from the research by APA, it is suggested that, unlike men, women are more engaged in domestic responsibilities and that the lack of free time might be a reason why the female population is not watching sports as much as males do.
Will women in the next couple of years become avid NFL fans? There are high hopes that the gender gap will be narrowed, especially for the Super Bowl event. It is estimated that 46% of the population that watches the Super Bowl is female.
Author: Ana Bogatinovska