It isn’t hard to find comments, online and elsewhere, that mock, disparage, or generally discount the idea of a woman with large muscles; a powerfully built woman, so it seems anyway, is at once an undesirable and an impossibility. Although the comments aren’t all phrased the same way, all spring from the same few fallacies.
We often hear, for instance, that large muscles make women too much like men. Implicit in this thinking, of course, is the notion that muscles are the exclusive property of men. Yet such isn’t a biological imperative, otherwise women would be utterly incapable of growing large muscles, which we know isn’t true. Rather, this is merely a social construct; one horribly antiquated and useless (nay harmful).
Then, some say women are incapable of rivaling men in strength and other measures of athletic performance. These I call antievolutionists, because implicit in their thinking is that human biology is static and unchangeable. When in fact even our brains are malleable. (The brain is not only the most complicated organ, but also the one perhaps most responsible for production and regulation of hormones, including muscle-building hormones.) And if you think lasting physiological change results only from natural selection or breeding, well, that would be wrong too.
Women have been denied opportunities to flex their muscles for most of history. Should it surprise anyone, then, that there is ground to be made up? (The two exceptions we know of from history-Sparta and Dahomey-also give the lie to the naysayers’ arguments.)
Nevertheless, now female athletes routinely do things that a generation or two ago no one thought possible.
Women adapt easily; they evolve more rapidly than men. (Could it be any other way?) Given time they will rise up and compete with men in athletics, as they do now in most other facets of life.
The quiet resolve shown by powerlifter Jessica Gallagher in the following video is typical of female athletes; why I foresee a day nearing when they will be formidable rivals to their male peers: