Representation, menstruation and finances – nothing was off the table about the realities female athletes in the snowsports industry experience last week.
The documentary All In was released on June 10 with professional athletes, physicians and psychologists speaking about common barriers surrounding female athleticism in the industry.
Freeski, slopestyle and big air athlete Laura Wotton said funding was a significant barrier to women remaining at competition level.
“I think we need more funding. Having funding for individual athletes gives more access to the sport, and creates opportunities that allows our sport to be more accessible,” she said.
To sustain being a full-time athlete, Wotton trains all day and works at an eatery in Wanaka in the evenings.
“Ideally I want to be having some off time when I get home to rest my body, so I can perform my best,” she said.
Freerider Jessie Violet said the financial factors impacted how many women remained in the industry, leaving a gap in female representation.
“I would like to see more opportunities for women. It would be really cool to have more events or camps happening to get more involved, and across all age groups. I know a lot of teenage girls across freeride tend to drop off,” she said.
Violet said she had noticed girls tended to drop out of competitions and qualifier tours between the ages of 16 and 21.
In the documentary, physician Sarah Beable shared the importance of training approaches reflecting the different biological factors between men and women.
She highlighted the lack of awareness between the biological circadian (daily) and endocrine (28 day) cycles.
The endocrine cycle consists of four stages follicular, ovulation and luteal when training for a female athlete.
Dr Beable acknowledged these stages should not be shamed, but instead utilised to optimise an athlete’s performance.
The film project was prompted after Treble Cone and Cardrona reviewed their social media accounts and discovered 29% of 2020 snowsports content featured women.
Cardrona and Treble Cone have committed to equitable gender representation.