Although I certainly love riding my bike, I'm definitely not an avid cycling fan. My boyfriend, however, is. He alerted me to a bit of sexism in the cycling world he came across yesterday and I thought it was weird and sketchy enough to share with all of you.
Orica GreenEdge is an Australian cycling team that has both men's and women's teams. They also have a YouTube channel with a feature called "Top Five," where team cyclists share five tips on fun cycling-related topics. The men's team has done top five videos on topics like "Top five tips to make it as a pro cyclist," "Top five tips for riding over cobbles" and "Top five tips to prevent cycling injuries" The women's cycling team? Well, they get to make a video called "Top five tips for looking good."
Seems a little strange, huh? The dudes get to give actual tips about how to ride your bike but the ladies are only qualified to tell you how to look your best while riding? Hmmmm. Smells like sexism to me!
While the tips the Orica GreenEdge ladies give in their video aren't specifically for female cyclists, that doesn't mean it's not shady that these talented female cyclists have been relegated to pointing out how to wear a helmet, while the male cyclists get to share knowledge on training and time trials. I don't know if this was an intended slight on the part of OGE or not, but hey, seems like a company might to be proud to show off something other than the bike fashion skills of their female riders. Why not include 2012 women's time trial champion Shara Gillow in the video about time trial tips, rather than only the male champion Luke Durbridge?
OGE is well-known in the cycling world for being media-savvy, but this kind of sexism, however slight, seems like a serious misstep. Hey OGE, we'd love to see a "Top Five" video where both male and female cyclists are featured giving legitimate tips for riders, or at least a video where the women who ride for you can talk about more than "looking good."