figure skating outfits

(83 Posts)
pinkyredrose Sun 17-Mar-13 17:38:33

Am currently watching the figure skating on BBC2, all amazing so far so good.

But noticed that all the mens outfits cover them from neck to toe and all the women show legs, cleavage, shoulders and arms. Anyone know why this should be?

I did get my feminist hat on a little, it obviously can't be because some outfits hinder movement otherwise the men would surely have skimpy outfits on too?

Very interested to hear opinions.

thezebrawearspurple Sun 17-Mar-13 20:05:51

Women are hot, men like admiring their bodies, women like looking as their figures are aspirational and we like comparing ourselves.

Mens bodies aren't interesting, women aren't interested in looking at their bodies and neither are the men, gays excepted perhaps but there's not enough of them, they'd lose most of the viewers if men started flashing their bits.

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 20:10:08

A bit like the volleyball players.

bigkidsdidit Sun 17-Mar-13 20:12:02

and gymnasts, adn athletes, and pole vaulters and ....

thezebrawearspurple I like looking at men's bodies. confused ( I could gaze at Ryan Gosling all day)!

OP I agree, I sometimes cringe at how skimpy female ice skater's outifts are. And wonder why we don't get a bit of male flesh to stare at.

I'm with dead, sorry - I'm attracted to men. If you don't find men's bodies attractive you're obviously not, which is fair enough, but it's rubbish to ignore the fact that straight women make up a pretty huge audience for these shows.

It's plain old sexism IMO.

specialsubject Sun 17-Mar-13 21:06:40

look more closely and you will see that those bare cleavages are actually covered in American tan netting, so the outfits don't fall off.

like all 'sports' with an artistic element, the slap and the frills are part of the show.

still better than beach volleyball where there is no way that a bikini that vanishes up their bums is a practical outfit. Or an attractive one.

PretzelTime Sun 17-Mar-13 21:09:19

I fucking HATE being told that everyone think ladiez are hot and menz are ugly and we should want to look at women's bodies at all times but not men's.
NO. That's not my preference. Speak for yourself. It's just an excuse for objectification of women, and the imbalance of half-naked women and covered men. Patriarchal shit, that's what it is.

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 21:12:59

YY to that.

Just count the pictures of half naked women you see in the media in a day.

jird Sun 17-Mar-13 21:13:51

yeah men should ice skate in tight pants

PretzelTime Sun 17-Mar-13 21:23:16

Another reason why men are more covered is because of homophobia. Yes there is homophobia even in the figure skating word, I was pretty confused when I first heard that, I thought it was a more tolerant sport. With all the sparkle and elegant movements and such.
One of my most favourite performances is Johnny Weir skating to Poker face.

pinkyredrose Sun 17-Mar-13 21:23:30

The thing I'm thinking about though is even if the womens outfits contain flesh coloured/American tan inserts it's still meant to look like flesh.

Why is it that the women show alot more 'flesh' than men? There's no technical nor artistic reason to do so as far as I can see.

Yes I do realise that in gymnastics, volleyball etc the women competitors show alot more flesh than the male competitors. I can't think of one real reason why this is so.

Lessthanaballpark Sun 17-Mar-13 21:25:47

What Pretzel said.

Why does anything that starts as a compliment for women (so hot, so full of empathy, so delicate, so good at multi-tasking) end up actually being quite shitty for them?

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 21:29:06

From the Huffington post

"The new rules won't necessarily result in the banishment of bikinis; after all, many of the players are professed fans of the tight uniforms. In a USA Today interview, U.S. champ Kerri Walsh extolled the kit as useful, saying "We need to be wearing bikinis. You don't want to be wearing baggy clothes and be lost in your clothes... we found something that is functional and sassy at the same time."

Other athletes are more upfront about the bikinis' appeal, including British star Denise Johns. "The people who own the sport [the Fédération Internationale de Volleyball] want it to be sexy," Johns told the Sunday Times. "I used to play in shorts and a T-shirt and was reluctant to change. But if it gets volleyball attention, so be it."

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 21:30:45

As a figure skater for over 16 years ill tell you why, because we like the dresses and as we get older we like to wear slightly more revealing ones. Women can skate in a all in one catsuit now, but they chose not to. Its personal choice what your dress looks like fitting with the theme of the music, figure skaters have shorter skirts than dance skaters to avoid the blade snatching in the material during certain moves.

By being arsey at the dress your actually commenting more on the woman who chose it than the sport. We get to choose our dresses.

I always think the mens outfits are quite revealing too. I was going to say "at least for shape" but I know that the women's ones use tan fabric or netting, so neither show a lot of flesh.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 21:36:43

You don't want ice burn that's why the flesh net is used on arms sometimes and if you want a strapless effect you use the tan mesh.

You speak for every single figure skater, gymnast, volleyball player, and for all the men who look at them and conclude that all other women enjoy being ogled because 'otherwise they wouldn't wear short skirts love', do you, mab?

Crikey, that's clever of you. hmm

pinkyredrose Sun 17-Mar-13 21:53:37

mabongwen I see where you're coming from but I still haven't had a realistic answer as to why women show more flesh than men.

Can it really be homophobia? Is it that prevelant in the sport as to influence the outfits?

Sorry, that was sarcastic of me but that did annoy me. Of course women get to choose to wear what they like. But the fact that women end up in more revealing clothes than men is telling, isn't it? And it does have an effect on how we as a society see differences between men and women.

pinkyredrose Sun 17-Mar-13 21:58:37

LRD I hear you! Yes it's very telling that women end up in more revealing clothes than the men. It's that difference that I'm challenging, I can't get my head around it.

badguider Sun 17-Mar-13 21:59:55

I think that the women in figure skating look good with their arms and legs on show and then a bit of fluttery fabric to catch the wind. It helps with the expression i think - that korean woman who won had beautiful expression in her arms and hands, so delicate..

The men look a bit daft to be honest but i'm not sure what would be better for them.... ?? leggings and a vest top perhaps? i don't know... it's tricky..

But in this case i wouldn't be arguing for the women covering up more.

Trekkie Sun 17-Mar-13 22:03:11

I haven't seen any figure skating recently but from what is in my brain certainly skimpily dressed men feature? Skin tight legging things and skin tight top or no top even.

FWIW I get much less worked up about this sort of thing if the primary objective isn't ogling - if it's dance or sport or athletics it offends me much less that just a random woman (never a man) in skimpy gear for no apparent reason eg women holding umberellas for motorcyclists, women in miniskirts walking out snooker players (when the fuck did that start anyway) and so on.

Also FWIW I am female and am more than happy to look at men's bodies. They are delicious. Anyone see the rugby yesterday? The idea that women's bodies are attractive and men's bodies are not - as a sort of fundamental rule - is just nonsense.

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 22:05:32

trekkie women doing the round count at boxing, doing the parade at F1. Beautiful women handing the champagne to the men at F1

Skin everywhere.

It was interesting watching the camera go up and down the team yesterday with the rugby smile

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:05:50

I have no idea about vollyball or gymnastics, but the women have a lot of input in their dresses. My championship dresses cost hundreds of pounds some cost thousands. I wouldn't compete in a dress I didn't like it would effect my performance.

Men also wear some revealing costumes some appear topless but have the mesh on them. Attention is generally directed towards the female in a pair, she has more presentation than the man, and can up the presentation marks (note the costume has nothing to do with the score) however the more eye catching her costume you will look at her more.

Why don't men wear revealing costumes? Go on a night out, they don't dress flamboyantly or to draw attention to themselves. Female figure skaters do. Costume for the ladies is far more important than it is for the men, we like them sparkly and flashy. Men would happily skate in a pair of jeans and a tshirt if they could. For them they aren't fussed, and many pair skaters costumes are dictated by the female. What she wants and he has to fit in. He has no choice and asking as its not pink they don't really care much.

So if anything its the woman in charge of the costumes not the men, its hardly a feminist point, as the woman actually has all the power for a change.

It's funny, isn't it, what we think of as looking daft and what we don't? My mate teaches History of Art and says you always get classes saying that those Renaissance sculptures of naked men look ridiculous because men in sexy poses just look silly. But I am guessing that to Renaissance men and women who fancied men, that wasn't so.

If someone wishes to bring in figure skating men wearing fluttery fabrics, I won't say no.

It is a feminist point, mab. Most of us do get to choose our own clothes, right? But what's interesting is how we choose, because basically everyone's visual senses are conditioned by society, aren't they? If that weren't true, there'd be no such thing as fashion.

So, the interesting thing is, how come virtually all women just happen to choose very similar things? And virtually all men choose another different, very similar set of things?

If a man decided to wear a dress figure skating, what would happen? Would it be seen as an empowering choice, or would some people think it was a little odd?

SecretNutellaFix Sun 17-Mar-13 22:11:02

Those links don't work for me. sad

Trekkie Sun 17-Mar-13 22:17:01

Well quite nutella, in my minds eye of a male figure skater, skin tight groinal leggings and no top / not really there top feature quite prominently.

I'm sure they aren't usually "covered up".

or maybe it's just my brain grin

SecretNutellaFix Sun 17-Mar-13 22:17:40

Philippe Candeloro- loved really flamboyant costumes or naked top half.

Ahh, thanks. Good for him. smile

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:20:39

He can wear one, but professional figure skating is a job, you earn. So if your bank manager turned up in a shift dress and a pair of heels you wouldn't look twice? His choice he can do, they just don't.

Why do we all choose similar ones because skating like ballroom dancing has a fasion of its on. So things come and go, couple of years ago it was crystals now ita mesh panelling. Its a trend within a sport. Also skating dresses are a set shape to begin with, with a regulation standard skirt for safety reasons.

I think your all being a bunch of sour mouthed twits about this. Its like saying why are the majority of wedding gowns strapless? They just are. Now that Kate Middleton has set a trend for lace sleeves that's working its way in slowly, when a certain dress catches the eye of skaters it will become a trend slowly.

Trekkie Sun 17-Mar-13 22:22:50

Not that I am saying that there is equality of flesh disclosure in figure skating.
But that to me it is less bothersome when all people involved are showing some and the primary purpose of showing it isn't to sexually arouse people.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:23:38

I would really hate to think that when I was competing in a dress I loved that had a bit of fleshy panelling that the feminist movement was hating me for it sad

SecretNutellaFix Sun 17-Mar-13 22:25:14
Trekkie Sun 17-Mar-13 22:25:27

I think that looking at the difference between male and female fashion is intersting though mabongwen. Seems that female garb gets smaller and smaller and male gets baggier and baggier.

Am pleased for men that the option of a beard is back on the table though grin

Yes, I get that mab. Of course it is a job. And of course it has a fashion of its own. But do you not think it is interesting how that fashion works for women and men, and what it says about how we see women's bodies and men's bodies?

That's all I think anyone is getting at (?).

I don't feel 'sour' about it, I just find it really interesting. Same way I find the fashion for strapless wedding dresses interesting, and the fact that this is a different fashion from the one back when my mum, or my granny, or my great-gran, got married.

It's not true to say 'they just are'. People research this stuff, just like any other social trend, and there are actually reasons why. For starters, if you look at wedding dresses now, loads are like Kate Middleton's. That's a simple example of how things are influenced. And it would tell an alien from outer space who'd never known our culture, that we think this young woman is special and important, because of the man she married. Surely that is actually quite an important bit of cultural information?

I get that lots of people think this sort of stuff is trivial, beneath their notice because it's 'just fashion' or 'just clothes' or 'just feminism', but why be so keen to belittle other people's interests?

Trekkie Sun 17-Mar-13 22:27:28

mab firstly the posters on here are individuals and not speaking for "the feminist movement"

and secondly lots of posters have said hey doesn't bother me

and thirdly if people don't like it then it's fashion / society etc the usual suspects they will get narked with rather than individual women competitors

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 22:30:23


"That's a simple example of how things are influenced. And it would tell an alien from outer space who'd never known our culture, that we think this young woman is special and important, because of the man she married. Surely that is actually quite an important bit of cultural information?"

That says a lot about our culture. You could get a dissertation out of that. You'd need to reference the DM and celebrity magazines though.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:30:28

Yes but that's fasion, and you don't have to comply if you don't want to, I don't believe me, I don't wear a skirt past my knee in day to day life, but when I've got to get my leg above my head then quickly in to another position I don't want to snag it and split my chin open again. Its a functional side to the costume. I could skate in a leotard but don't fancy the ice burn on my arse when I fall so the skirt helps smile

mab - of course you don't have to comply. confused Who is telling you you do have to comply?

Tell them to fuck right off if they try it, how rude!

But anyway, to get back to the point ... yes, kim, it'd be a fun dissertation to write, too. I would seriously love to do that.

TheSmallClanger Sun 17-Mar-13 22:35:10

Male figure skaters aren't allowed to wear skirts for competition. They also have to wear a top with sleeves (armpits covered up) and trousers rather than tights. Partly, this is due to homophobia, although I suspect that most male skaters don't actually want to wear skirts anyway.

For skating exhibitions, pretty much anything goes.

A while back, a few of the top female skaters were experimenting with trousers and catsuits - Irina Slutskaya used to compete in spangly catsuits, as did some others. One of the dance skaters was actually prevented from competing in trousers, although I can't remember her name.

Many skaters might like the glitz and glamour that skating tends to encompass, and play up to it for presentation marks, but I do wonder about other girls who might enjoy skating and be good at it, who are put off by the hyper-femmey expectations of the judges and their peers? There is suitable dancewear out there that gives the right silhouette and range of movement, that doesn't involve faux-nudity or diamante.

I say this as a skating fan, and also as the mum of a rhythmic gymnast - RG has skating-style costumes now that seem to get more outlandish and expensive by the year. It is market-driven.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:35:15

I just feel its unfair to critique a athlete on what she has worn to compete, look at Jessica Ennis and other track and field ladies running in Lycra knickers and a crop top! The men have longer shorts and tight vest tops! But the women choose the knickers! What does that say?

Figure skating is a sport and has a costume to compete. Day to day fasion is different and deserves to be discussed outside the realms of sport.

Trekkie Sun 17-Mar-13 22:36:49

Or you could skate in the same as the men wear ie trouser things.

Not saying you should - but that the prevailing fashions and acceptable modes of dress obviously have a hug influence on the costumes selected.

It would take a very unusual individual to say sod this I'm going to do my figure skating in a different sort of thing to everyone else. Maybe put no makeup on. Something. But I suspect it would adversely affect their marks / getting someone good to dance with them and so on and I bet the trainer etc would have a lot to say about it.

So it's not purely individual choice. Norms are adhered to, by both men and women. Perfectly understandably.

What's wrong with critique?

I would agree it's unfair to blame an athlete for what they wear, but surely critique is fine? Do you actually mean you would be offended at any mention of outfits that wasn't purely factual?

I thought you said women competitors get judged on their outfits?


TheSmallClanger Sun 17-Mar-13 22:37:39

Oh, and thanks for the Philippe Candeloro vids. He was my favourite skater - I tend to like the French male skaters a lot.

I totally agree with trekkie btw that it'd be very hard for an individual to change things from within. But things do change. Take ballet, and just look at how conventions for what people wear have changed!

Doesmybumlookbiginthiss Sun 17-Mar-13 22:39:29

I think they look great and believe the world would be much blander without elegant graceful women skaters with great legs in short skirts...phwooooarr! grin

FairPhyllis Sun 17-Mar-13 22:40:23

This is relevant to any discussion of male figure skating costumes. I think it's meant to be a parody of Candeloro.

Subtle, does, subtle.

Thank goodness for elegant graceful women skaters with great legs in short skirts.

Is it ok if I continue to believe the world would be much blander without punctuation? wink

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:41:32

theamall judges are not allowed to judge on costume or appearence only on the technical side and have to point out or write why a deduction is given. For instance if you land a jump and place your hand on the ice ots a .5 deduction the same for a two foot landing, a fall is a point deduction off that move. Every move has a mark, your programme both short and long have a list of elements they must do to reach standard. The presentation mark is made up by how you hold yourself, arm momements and smiling so forth. At no point is your costume or makeup marked. A woman I often compete against does so with no make up on and plain all block colour dresses, sometimes she scores higher than me sometimes lower than me all depends on how we skate.

I coach a Tom boy she lives it and skates a catsuit, its all personal choice.

Sorry, I'm confused.

You said that 'Men also wear some revealing costumes some appear topless but have the mesh on them. Attention is generally directed towards the female in a pair, she has more presentation than the man, and can up the presentation marks (note the costume has nothing to do with the score) however the more eye catching her costume you will look at her more.'

I thought you were saying that women get looked at more for their costumes, and though marks can't be explicitly awarded for costume, you thought that the a woman's 'costume' will make you 'look at her more'.

Did you not mean what I thought there?

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 22:44:55

But you did say the more eye catching the outfit, the more the judges will notice you.

Which is just an interesting comment to make - it's obviously going to be true but it's just more stuff to put in the dissertation. Probably a thesis by now.

We should write it, kim.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:47:14

You can always ask a referee about your marks and they can be re evaluated.

The only thing costume wise a judge can comment on is of your costume poses a risk to you or other skaters. Costumes with feathers are not allowed as the feathers could fall off causing you to trip or the next skater. If something falls off your costume you get a deduction.

TheSmallClanger Sun 17-Mar-13 22:48:01

Irina Slutskaya

The commentary directly references her outfit and the rule change. It's also interesting how they describe her skating in relation to the sort of image she is portraying on the ice.

SecretNutellaFix Sun 17-Mar-13 22:48:11

In the 1994 Olympics Katarina Witt did a Robin Hood routine in the green jerkin, white shirt and leggings. Pushing the boundaries of what was acceptable for female skaters

Earlier in her career she forced a change in the rules about costume because she wore a blue skirtless feather trimmed outfit which was deemed too revealing.

This was it

There will never be a happy solution, and the skaters do, I hope, get a say in what they wear.

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 22:48:23

Does your smile get judged?
Or is that synchronised swimming?

<Sorry smile >

Oh, I see ... so people don't actually like the judges to be paying attention to their costumes, and this is something that they check up on?

That sounds quite sad. Sensible about feathers, of course.

So are you saying you feel it's the judges who are to blame, because they look at women's dresses but are not meant to do so?

I should say I'm shocked but I'm not really. It must feel shit.

secret - oh, that's fascinating ... because that is cross dressing (among other things), the Robin Hood outfit. Is that coincidence or something to do with it?

Her other outfit looks quite tame to me now, but I guess standards have changed?

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:52:23

Why look at the woman more? In a lift you look at her she is smiling look at them man he looks like he is about to shit a brick sometimes, women are elegant and graceful and the skirt helps this. Men can be elegant and graceful but in a pair they are generally there for strength and to throw. In a throw jump you want to/need to be looking at her, her landing will get you the marks.

The same could be said for ballroom, he is in a black tux she is in a flamboyant feathery dress hmm its just how it goes.

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 22:55:52

"its just how it goes"


Why does a skirt help women to be elegant and graceful, then?

It's not true to say 'its just how it goes' - because at points in history, men have dressed flamboyantly. Besides which, I think quite a lot of women find men in tuxes very appealing - I know this may seem strange if you are naturally looking at the woman, but some women find men attractive. It's quite normal IMO.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 22:57:10

Its a costume, its part of the performance. A good judge won't care what you have on as long as its regulation standard dress.

Its a performance sport, the costume adds to the enjoyment of it for both skaters and spectators.

spongebobscardypants Sun 17-Mar-13 22:59:20

Ohhhh I've been in skate world all my life! Wonders who MOB cld be!!!! Me and my family love the dresses and customising them to suit the wearer! Never have I heard a wearer complain and if they did they can wear the catsuit. Which I stink is more revealing than a dress!

PretzelTime Sun 17-Mar-13 22:59:47

She looked great in the Robin Hood outfit, it was elegant. I'm so pissed off with what it considered OK outfits for men and women. I can't understand why you'd want rigid rules for what the sexes can wear when it comes to art and performances.

latebreakfast Sun 17-Mar-13 23:00:31

So if your bank manager turned up in a shift dress and a pair of heels you wouldn't look twice? His choice he can do, they just don't.

This is all about status. Most of us are conditioned to believe that women have lower status to men. A man wearing a dress is lowering his status to that of a woman - and he therefore looks ridiculous. This idea of status seems to be subconscious - even when you're aware of it (and are an ardent feminist), the thought of your DP wandering around in a dress just because he wants to remains deeply disturbing.

Most of us challenge the status quo by ensuring that our daughters can do anything they want to do - however "masculine" society perceives it to be. Of course we do, not least because subconsciously they're raising their status by doing so. Hardly any of us do the same for our sons - and so the whole idea of status is reinforced in both directions.

So the costume does matter and is part of the performance? Come on ... it's one thing or the other! Let's be honest.

pretzel - I can see it would be fun, too. I would have liked to see it.

IMO, rigid rules tend to be sexist, and crap for creativity. No matter what the context.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 23:02:14

Its a sport nothing to do with attraction! If you like watching men in a tux that's up to you, if a woman feels confident in a dress she has designed and a man happens to find her attractive is that different?

I don't see why attraction comes in to a sport. I've had enough Lycra glad penises thrust in my face during a routine im not attracted to them?

kim147 Sun 17-Mar-13 23:04:20

Interesting point about what men used to wear. Go to a black tie event (look at the name) and the men are all in tuxedos. Identical. But the women have more choice - or is it more pressure?

<Considers asking LRD when she wants to start writing our book as far too much material for a mere thesis>

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 23:05:57

Its part of the performance not part of the marks, there is a difference. You can't be marked on it but you can look good doing it, and feel confident wearing whatever dress you want. Top competions are broadcast and skaters what their routines and costumes to amaze the spectators but they want the judges to mark their skating. Its rather a simple set up really.

And yes the catsuits are worse you get a mega camel toe envy

mab - I thought you were saying men in tuxes weren't the normative focus of attention, and judges look more at women?

If that's true, then, yes, it's different ... how could it not be?

If you're not attracted to men, or penises, that's entirely your business. Equally if you're not attracted to women or vaginas. But you are describing a gendered distinction and insisting it is both 'the way it is' and somehow not amenable to discussion ... so I am curious as to why that is, and sexual attraction seems obvious since it is one of the basic differences in the way individuals see men and women, isn't it?

I am getting confused about whether you think it's wrong for men and women to end up dressing differently, or not? Half your posts are suggesting it is and half not. confused

kim - we need to publish the MN Little Book asap! grin

Mind you, though, I always wonder because apparently men in tuxes aren't identical and clever people will immediately see the difference. My uncle, who is very pretentious and into judging people's appearances, will immediately know if someone is wearing a posh brand or not (and he doesn't consider this remotely unfeminine though to be interested in fashioin otherwise, is).

Maybe we're just forced to concentrate harder to place men on a social spectrum?

TheSmallClanger Sun 17-Mar-13 23:17:53

It may be "the way it is", but that doesn't mean we shouldn't discuss it and work out why it is.

My personal opinion is that the more variation in how people express themselves through their appearance, the better. Things aren't usually either/or: you could skate in dance pants and a spangly leotard together if you wanted to, to use a skating example. It's the same for the "men in tuxes" thing: we talk as if there is a choice between a boring identikit dinner jacket and women's clothing, when there's a sizeable grey area of interestingly coloured/cut/fabric'ed suits and variations on menswear.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 23:19:36

What I am saying is, men and women HAVE to dress differently on the ice because of the rules. Men can not wear a dress to compete, but women can wear a catsuit if they choose too but generally wear dresses because they prefer too and its a personal choice.

So perhaps the men are being supressed by not getting to wear a skirt but women can wear trousers? But that's a debate for another day.

What my overall stance on this is, the dress choices and looks are a personal choice to the skater. If she wants to wear a dress that is revealing its her personal choice! You can't say its unfair as they have a choice, the choices are non revealing dress, revealing dress or trousers.These women like to look nice and feel confident ina dress of their choosing, why take that away from them?

Why is it a debate for another day? confused

Surely, either women can choose what they were, or they can't. Apparently, they can't choose, and neither can men, and the judges and audience have a bearing on what women wear too. So, surely these things suggest it is in fact quite important, what women and men get to wear?

It's obviously not 'personal choice', as you've explained clearly. So, how come these choices are gendered, do you think? Do you think it is right to be looking at this in terms of 'taking this away'? Personally, I think that seems rather unnecessary - what do you imagine anyone wants to do that? Is it something someone has said off-board, or is that what you think people mean on this thread, even though no-one has said or hinted at it?

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 23:26:05

Sorry if im sounding short, im in pain with a UTI blush

*wear, not were, apologies.

Oh, sorry, you're in pain. You're not sounding short at all, don't worry. Feel better soon.

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 23:37:29

Women do get a choice though, I've flat out refused to wear some dresses and never been questioned on it, and many other skaters have done the same. You generally discuss the "look" of your dress with the seemstress she then draws up to 5/6 designs and you choose what you want.

Women do get a choice and a lot more than the men, that's what im getting at. Men do get the short straw when it comes to costumes, they have to match her and it can cause some rather nasty arguments generally involving the sentance "im not wearing pink!" or "im nit having sparkly bits" but the poor men are bullied in to submission and end up with baby pink crystal encrusted flouncy collars and cuffs lol

The costumes are really personal choice, I know you think they are not but they are. I've seen girls throw full on strips about dresses with blade guards and skates flying across a ice rink at 5am because its not the right one!

Some women are more flashy and risky than others and if you sit and watch competition after competition you will see that over time each skater develops their own style of dress that they like.

Do you not think men should have equal choice, though?

I can understand that, within the constraints you describe, women may have more choice than men - but I think it matters that both men and women have some constraints on what they wear, and I think it matters that there is sex discrimination.

Obviously we don't have to think about these issues all day, every day, but is it wrong to consider them sometimes?

mabongwen Sun 17-Mar-13 23:46:55

I do feel men should have more choice, but they normally do what they are told to keep the peace. During exhibition skating competions however there are no constraints, but during official competitions there are rules, the skirt length isna safety issue but I have no idea why the men can't wear one.

But from personal experience men hate the dresses when they put them on you get "omg these ate fucking cold" " argh it burns your arse when you fall over" " this fucking thing is riding up my arse and crushing my nuts" grin

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