Trending
MOST READ
SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

News: Data and records obtained by the Current show that between January 1, 2013, and early October of this year the San Antonio... By Alexa Garcia-Ditta and Elaine Wolff 10/22/2014
6 Sinfully Good Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in SA

6 Sinfully Good Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in SA

Food & Drink: Cheesy Jane’s. Multiple locations, cheesyjanes.com. If the name is any indicator, this San Antonio staple doesn’t mess around when it comes to... By Tommie Ethington 10/22/2014
Alamo Ice House Brings Hill Country to Downtown

Alamo Ice House Brings Hill Country to Downtown

Food & Drink: There was a special kind of draw at Alamo Ice House on a recent Tuesday evening. A handful of weeks after opening its... By Jessica Elizarraras 10/22/2014
A Closer Look: The ins and outs of a few important races

A Closer Look: The ins and outs of a few important races

News: For more than a year now gubernatorial candidates Wendy Davis and Greg Abbott have dominated airwaves and secured way... By Mark Reagan 10/22/2014
‘Walking the Camino’ Explores a Treacherous Trek Through Spain

‘Walking the Camino’ Explores a Treacherous Trek Through Spain

Screens: In the Middle Ages, pilgrims walked the 500-mile El Camino de Santiago de Compostela as a pilgrimage to the tomb of Apostle St. James. It was an... By Stephen James Ross 10/22/2014
Calendar

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email

Arts & Culture

Hit like a girl: women boxers in a man's world

Photo: PHOTOS BY JOSH HUSKIN, License: N/A

PHOTOS BY JOSH HUSKIN

Coach Alcoser: once reluctant to train women, he's now a believer.

Photo: , License: N/A

Paloma Campos (left) and Mónica Álvarez going toe-to-toe.



Related stories


Raw aggression is thought to be the peculiar province of men, as nurturing is the peculiar province of women. (The female boxer violates this stereotype and cannot be taken seriously — she is parody, she is cartoon, she is monstrous. Had she an ideology, she is likely to be a feminist.) — Joyce Carol Oates, On Boxing

"I sometimes say I am in a relationship with boxing," — Marlen Esparza, 2012 Olympic boxing medalist.

Decades before the Marquess of Queensbury rules of sports boxing were published in 1867, bareknuckle fights between women were staged in London in the early 1700s. Centuries later, U.S. women boxers were still hard-pressed to be taken seriously in the testosterone-fueled, male dominated, sport until Christy Martin landed on the cover of Sports Illustrated in 1996. Soon after, Laila Ali and Jacqui Frazier, the daughters of two of boxing's most famous champs, fought in 2001.

For the most part, that breakthrough was short-lived, for the dearth of women boxers even today in larger cities and smaller towns often leads young female hopefuls to anxiety — finding a gym that will train them and another woman boxer for a competition match, or even just to spar, isn't easy.

In the past decade, women's boxing has grown rapidly in popularity. Most world boxing organizations now have a woman's division — ditto, the Golden Gloves competition of USA Boxing, and other amateur boxing organizations. The surge can be attributed in part to the successful Oscar-winning film Million Dollar Baby based on short stories by boxing cutman-turned-writer F.X. Toole. The trainer in the film portrayed by Clint Eastwood (who also directed) was loosely based on Toole.

One of the film's more famous lines,"I don't train girls," gave voice to the struggle women boxers face in the heretofore man's sport.

Toole died in 2002, before the film's release. As a reporter for the Express-News, I interviewed Toole when he came to San Antonio to research a never completed novel about a Tex-Mex boxer from Poteet. I asked how he felt about women in boxing after he visited a local Southside gym and briefly trained a professional woman boxer.

"I've trained women who are good fighters," Toole said. "They only fight two minutes and wear chest protectors so it doesn't hurt them up there like it does a man. That's the reason they throw a lot of headshots. My point is the bar has been lowered. That is not to say there aren't any good women fighters. As much as women may be competitive, I don't like to see women fight and get hurt. We best serve ourselves, our family and our culture to whatever gender we're born."

Fast forward: The 2012 Summer Olympics in London. For aficionados of the sweet science, and for those who have tired of women boxing matches as sideshows or opening events in professional boxing, this summer Olympics in London provided a first. Women's boxing is now considered a medal sport.

Recently in Arts & Culture
  • SA Design Maven D’Ette Cole and the Topography of Junk D’Ette Cole has been an artist, interior designer, antiques dealer and even a pie. Simply put, she notices everything, and has built her career on... | 10/22/2014
  • Failure Is Not an Option: George Lopez returns to SA It is evident comedian George Lopez is still a little sensitive about the on-again, off-again relationship he’s had with television. Whatever the... | 10/22/2014
  • Free Will Astrology ARIES (March 21-April 19): The driest place on the planet is the Atacama Desert in northern Chile. It gets about a half-inch of rain per year. And yet in 2011, archaeologists discovered that it’s also home to a site containing the fossilized skeletons of nu | 10/22/2014
We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus