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Women and sports: Where we go from here

The relationship between women and sports appear closer than ever, but challenges still remain. Old stereotypes and barriers are mostly gone, but differences remain in the way American males and females participate in, consume and think about sports. The key moving forward will be
whether women's sports proponents can meld the gains of the past 40 years with the needs, sensibilities and realities of today's world. For the believers, new frontiers beckon. It is an exciting time.

Updated: January 25, 2011, 11:31 AM ET
By Val Ackerman

The relationship between women and sports seems like it should be simple. Sports involve the use of our bodies; women have bodies; therefore, women and sports should naturally relate.

But like many relationships, this one is more complicated than it seems to be on the surface. To be sure, the coupling of women and sports, at least in this country, is stronger than at any point in our history. When I was growing up in suburban Trenton, New Jersey, in the 1960s and '70s, I had relatively ...

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