Kenya runner's death highlights pressures faced by female athletes

Asia's Tech News Daily

Kenya runner's death highlights pressures faced by female athletes
© Jonathan NACKSTRAND Agnes Tirop’s death shone a light on the lives of elite Kenyan women athletes

The death of Kenyan running star Agnes Tirop has thrown a spotlight on the pressures faced by the country’s female athletes who pay a huge — and often tragic — price for their spectacular success in a male-dominated society.

Although their meteoric rise seemingly reflects a progressive shift in gender norms, the reality is much more grim, with young women particularly vulnerable to financial exploitation at the hands of coaches, agents and even their loved ones.

“Women athletes bear the burden of the whole family,” marathon great Mary Keitany told AFP, days after her former training partner Tirop was found stabbed to death aged just 25, with her husband named as a key suspect.

Keitany’s career exposed her to several young athletes like Tirop, who spend years balancing their demanding professional lives with social expectations around marriage and motherhood while also serving as the key breadwinner for large extended families.

Kenya runner's death highlights pressures faced by female athletes
© Antonin THUILLIER Kenya remains one of the world’s top distance running nations but its reputation has been tarnished by a series of scandals

Devoted to sports from an early age, many lack the necessary education to manage their finances, the four-time New York marathon champion said, putting them at risk of being used as “cash cows” by greedy spouses.

“They realise when it’s too late that their investment is not in their hands and they sink into depression,” said the recently-retired mother-of-two.

Like Tirop, who was born into a peasant family in the Rift Valley, many Kenyan athletes see sporting success as their ticket out of poverty and get their start in training camps which are unregulated and notorious hotbeds of sexual misconduct.

Kenya runner's death highlights pressures faced by female athletes
© Yasuyoshi CHIBA Former world marathon record holder Tegla Loroupe says women runners in Kenyan are preyed on by disreputable men

“There are so many wolves out there waiting to prey on these girls,” Tegla Loroupe, a former world marathon record holder, told AFP.

Agents pay off families to convince them to “force the girls to drop out of school prematurely and compete in overseas races”, the 48-year-old said.

– ‘Wake-up call’ –

Those who find success quickly often struggle to cope, said Wilfred Bungei, a gold medallist in the men’s 800m race at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

“The young athletes cannot handle the fame and money that comes at their disposal so suddenly,” he told AFP, adding that many men blow their fortune on luxury cars or liquor instead of planning for the future.

Female athletes on the other hand risk being seduced into toxic relationships with predatory men, he said.

“The young girls need to be given space to grow,” said the retired runner, who now counsels troubled athletes after a bruising battle with alcoholism.

In the past Athletics Kenya has sought to protect female athletes by closing two training camps in the Rift Valley for allegedly exploiting young women.

But “Tirop’s death has been a wake-up call”, Athletics Kenya spokesman Dominic Ondieki told AFP, adding that the country’s sporting community needed to address the elephant in the room.

“Athletes are now opening up to reveal the challenges they are facing in their marriages… It seems most of these athletes have been suffering in silence,” he said.

“They seem to lack the decision-making power which is often left to their husbands, who take full control of the finances of the family.”

– Superhuman expectations –

In a move to address the issue, the federation is holding a workshop in early December to discuss women’s economic and social rights in marriage and other intimate relationships.

“We shall invite sports psychologists and family counsellors to come and offer their professional counselling”, Ondiek added.

Observers say much more needs to be done to support the women whose hard work has given the East African nation so much to cheer about.

With a glittering career, a family and business investments to cushion her retirement, Keitany is a rare success story on the personal and professional front.

But the 39-year-old, who only took up distance running after the birth of her first child, says the pressure for female athletes to be superwomen must stop.

“A woman athlete is expected to bear children, fight to quickly shed the weight and get back into shape and return to competition in order to bring food on the table for the whole family.

“Yet the men just wait and enjoy the fruits of her sweat. This should be rebuked.”

aik/amu/np/lp

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related

OTHER NEWS

The Butt-Lifting Leggings Jennifer Garner and I Wear Nonstop Are at Their Lowest Price Ever

Jennifer Garner Wore the Butt-Lifting Leggings Celebs and Fashion Editors Are Obsessed With Getty Images A lot has changed in the last year. I moved from Minnesota back to New ... Read more »

Myanmar's Suu Kyi due to hear first verdict in junta trial

© Stan HONDA Suu Kyi faces 3 years in jail if found guilty of incitement against the military Ousted Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi is expected to hear the ... Read more »

Dylan Teves scores second straight hat trick to lead UW to Elite 8

© Max Aquino / Sounder at Heart There isn’t a player in the nation any hotter than Dylan Teves. The Seattle Sounders Academy graduate scored his second straight hat trick ... Read more »

Sputnik financier eyes vaccine facility in Philippines

© The STAR / File Sputnik financier eyes vaccine facility in Philippines MANILA, Philippines — The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is looking at establishing a COVID-19 vaccine facility in ... Read more »

The Philippines is a frontline of another cold war

© Getty Images The Philippines is a frontline of another cold war Like in the Cold War, the United States is attempting to contain the influence of a great power ... Read more »

What you need to know about the omicron variant

© Phill Magakoe/AFP via Getty Images Travelers queue at a check-in counter at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg, South Africa, on November 27, 2021, after several countries imposed new ... Read more »

*Everything* You Need To Know About K-Pop Solo Artist Somi

© Provided by Cosmopolitan Philippines A couple of months ago, I chanced upon this song called “DUMB DUMB” by Jeon Somi. I can’t shake its addicting whistling tune out of ... Read more »

9 *New* Korean Skincare Products We Can't Wait To Try

© Provided by Cosmopolitan Philippines With people staying more at home in the past two years, the skincare industry has grown exponentially. We’ve seen an increasing number of skincare products ... Read more »

Cycling-Archibald, Lavreysen dominate UCI Track Champions League second round

© Reuters/CHRISTIAN HARTMANN UCI Track Cycling World Championships (Reuters) – Britain’s Katie Archibald and Dutchman Harrie Lavreysen strengthened their grip on the UCI Track Champions League in round two in ... Read more »

Australia to introduce new laws to force media platforms to unmask online trolls

© Reuters/STEVEN SAPHORE A man takes a mobile phone picture of the windowed ceiling at a shopping mall in Sydney MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Australia will introduce legislation to make social ... Read more »

Soccer-Benfica match abandoned after COVID-hit opponents left with six players

© Reuters/PEDRO NUNES Primeira Liga – Belenenses v Benfica By Catarina Demony LISBON (Reuters) – Benfica’s Primeira Liga match at Belenenses on Saturday was abandoned amid extraordinary scenes after their ... Read more »

We're Obsessed With Andrea Brillantes' ~*Minimalist*~ Ear Piercings

© Provided by Cosmopolitan Philippines Aside from her minimalist tattoos, Andrea Brillantes is also a big fan of ~subtle~ ear piercings! Just recently, she got her ears pierced by Rachel Ravana—the piercer ... Read more »

Can US troops be punished for refusing Covid jabs?

© Getty Images On 28 November, two key branches of the US military – the Navy and the Marines – will hit a deadline for their members to get Covid ... Read more »

Senators tell Mago: ‘Tell the truth'

© The STAR / Paolo Romero, file Senators tell Mago: ‘Tell the truth’ MANILA, Philippines — Senators are encouraging resigned Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corp. official Krizle Grace Mago to tell the truth. ... Read more »

Shear line, easterlies to bring scattered rains over parts of Luzon

Rain storm weather disturbance umbrellas sickness disease flu prevention disaster announcement monsoon thumbnail generic 178122558 weather-storm weather-rain news-weather rain thumb weather thumbnail The shear line currently affecting the northeastern section ... Read more »

The woman saving Yemen's crumbling heritage

As a child, Harbia Al Himiary would marvel at the architecture of her home country of Yemen. In her own birthplace of Sanaa she admired from an early age the ... Read more »

Kyrgyzstan parliamentary election expected to bolster president

© Reuters/HANNAH MCKAY COP26 in Glasgow BISHKEK (Reuters) – Kyrgyzstan votes for a new parliament on Sunday, a year after an earlier election triggered riots which toppled the government. After ... Read more »

Lille complain about pitch after draw, Nice suffer surprise loss

© FRANCOIS LO PRESTI Lille were angered by the state of their own pitch on Saturday Lille criticised the state of the pitch at their own Stade Pierre-Mauroy after the ... Read more »

Allegri: Juventus have to start from scratch, not automatically Scudetto favorites

© Photo by Sportinfoto/DeFodi Images via Getty Images Juventus slipped to yet another defeat at home against a well-organized Atalanta side that left Juventus Stadium with their first ever win, ... Read more »

Soccer-Palmeiras win Copa Libertadores with Deyverson extra-time goal

© Reuters/AGUSTIN MARCARIAN Copa Libertadores – Final – Palmeiras v Flamengo MONTEVIDEO (Reuters) -Palmeiras won the Copa Libertadores for the second year in a row when an extra-time goal from ... Read more »

Deyverson grabs winner as Palmeiras retain Libertadores title

© Juan Mabromata Palmeiras’ Deyverson celebrates after scoring against Flamengo in the Copa Libertadores final Deyverson scored an extra-time winner as reigning champions Palmeiras retained the Copa Libertadores on Saturday ... Read more »

Soccer-Late goals ensure Barcelona win away at Villarreal

© Reuters/PABLO MORANO LaLiga – Villarreal v FC Barcelona MADRID (Reuters) – Barcelona scored twice in the closing stages for a 3-1 triumph at Villarreal on Saturday as they won ... Read more »

Paolo Contis, may komento sa annulment case nila ni Lian Paz at akusasyong pinababayaan niya ang mga anak

© Provided by PEP.ph GORGY RULA Magkakasunod na laugh emojis ang sagot sa akin ni Paolo Contis nang tinext ko nitong Sabado ng umaga, Nobyembre 27, na siya na talaga ang ... Read more »

Portugal's main opposition party re-elects moderate leader as election looms

© Reuters/PEDRO NUNES FILE PHOTO: Debate on 2022 state budget draft at the Portuguese Parliament By Sergio Goncalves LISBON (Reuters) – Portugal’s main opposition Social Democratic Party (PSD) re-elected Rui ... Read more »

Galvez thanks British government for vaccines

© Screen grab / Senate of the Philippines YouTube page Galvez thanks British government for vaccines MANILA, Philippines — National Task Force against COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. thanked ... Read more »

Oriental Mindoro bettor wins P378.7 million lotto jackpot

© STAR/File Oriental Mindoro bettor wins P378.7 million lotto jackpot MANILA, Philippines — A bettor from Oriental Mindoro won the jackpot in the 6/58 Ultra Lotto drawn on Friday night. ... Read more »

Brabant Julia Boschman (19) wins talent show K2 is looking for K3

Julia Boschman from Brabant has won the talent show K2 is looking for K3. The 19-year-old resident of Bergen op Zoom will form the popular singing trio together with Hanne ... Read more »

Sam Wood shares 5 family-friendly breakfast recipes that can be prepared in under 5 minutes.

© Getty Images Sam Wood shares 5 family-friendly breakfast recipes that can be prepared in under 5 minutes. With breakfast being one of the most important meals of the day, ... Read more »

DoH wants HK included in travel ban; warns vs lowering Covid alert

HEALTH Secretary Francisco Duque 3rd on Saturday said that the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) has recommended the inclusion of Hong Kong in the ... Read more »

LPL documentary following EDG's 2021 regular season debuts on YouTube

© Provided by Dot Esports The first episode of the LPL’s Make/Break documentary series went live on the LPL English YouTube channel today after launching on Twitch last week. It ... Read more »

In slap at China, US praises SAfrica's detection of new Covid strain

© Phill Magakoe Travellers queue for Covid tests at Johannesburg airport on November 27, 2021, after several countries banned flights from South Africa following the discovery of a new Covid-19 ... Read more »

Biggest Overwatch League roster moves heading into 2022

© Provided by Dot Esports Considering the Overwatch League will be swapping over to Overwatch 2’s five vs. five competitive setup when it resumes in April, most fans were mentally ... Read more »

France's Zemmour shows finger to critic as campaign woes mount

© Nicolas TUCAT An AFP photographer caught the exchange, outside a restaurant in the city French far-right presidential hopeful Eric Zemmour on Saturday gave the finger to a passer-by during ... Read more »

NLEX toll collection gets system upgrade

© STAR/File NLEX toll collection gets system upgrade MANILA, Philippines — NLEX Corp. continues to upgrade its toll collection system by equipping more lanes with automatic license plate recognition and ... Read more »

Barcelona survive Xavi's tactical nightmare against Villarreal

© Provided by 90min Xavi nearly cost Barcelona | Eric Alonso/GettyImages For all the talk of Xavi being the man to come in and teach Barcelona how to play football ... Read more »

Barcelona leave it late to beat Villarreal, register first La Liga away win

© JOSE JORDAN Memphis Depay gave Barcelona a late lead against Villarreal in La Liga on Saturday Barcelona notched their first away win in La Liga this season in Xavi ... Read more »

Bryan Adams “Symptomatic” But “On The Mend” After Testing Positive For Covid In Italy – 2nd Update

2nd UPDARE SATURDAY 2:30 PM: Rocker Bryan Adams on Saturday posted a new update from Milan, Italy where he was taken to the hospital after testing positive for Covid upon ... Read more »

FIFA 22: How to complete Signature Signings Gelson Martins SBC – Requirements and solutions

© Provided by GamePur FIFA 22 is celebrating FIFA 22 by giving players a brand new promo full of great players. One of the players in the Signature Signings promo ... Read more »

Black Friday 2021: Best adult advent calendars you can buy on sale right now: Tea, makeup, chocolate and more

Looking for more Black Friday deals, gift guides and holiday tips? Sign up for Yahoo Lifestyle Canada’s newsletter! Snap up these on-sale advent calendars before they’re gone! (Photos via DavidsTea ... Read more »

Daniela Elser: Prince William replacing Harry as new 'Prince of Hearts'

OPINION: Let us all now, for just a moment, remember The Hair. Those glorious, luxuriant blonde locks which Prince William sported from his teenage years into his 20s. It’s hard ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic