Renee Sang

Powderpuff allows girls and guys to switch roles and experience sports through a different perspective.

Mansoor Esfandieyar

As gender roles evolve in society, there has been a significant increase in women’s participation in sports that were once associated with only one gender: males. Therefore, an increasingly important factor for social change has been marked by men and women participating in non-traditional roles for their sex.

With Powderpuff just two days from today, the importance of gender roles in sports at Seminole High School has become more important than ever. Powderpuff is a twist on the classic high school football game in which girls are the football players and boys are the cheerleaders. It is meant to promote friendly competition between the juniors and seniors in the spirit of homecoming and to serve as a way for students to try out new sports and have fun. 

“I think Powderpuff is a great way for girls to show off their athletic abilities that they are not able to portray in activities such as football, and it allows for them to experience sports that only cater to males in high school,” said senior Simran Shah.

However, there have been cases at Seminole of former Powderpuff athletes feeling stereotyped and experiencing discrimination in regards to the reversed gender roles. These stereotypes lead to difficulties for both boys and girls when trying to expand their horizons and explore the identities of one another’s traditional roles in sports.

It is well known that women still struggle to be recognized with their deserved state of capability and independence. Thus, in this case it is ludicrous that the general concept of high school girls playing football is pared down by others, as if women are not capable of playing a customarily male game.

Senior Amrita Kapat commented, “I think Powderpuff is a really good turn on sexism. However, many of my friends did not join last year because some of them felt like they were incapable, as others were to taunt them if [they participated].”

In addition, boys also are also affected by this issue. They tend to shy away from traditionally “feminine” pursuits or traits due to insecurities that correlate with factors such as judgment, criticism, and inability to express their personality. However, not all males share the same reaction regarding Powderpuff.

“Wearing the uniforms and practicing before the game was a lot of fun, and it showed that I can be comfortable with myself no matter what I am doing,” said senior Dillon Jules.

Although the gender roles inherent in our society prevent some from participating or fully enjoying this experience, the Powderpuff game held every year is a tradition that should be continued as it provides a sense of community and camaraderie among both the participants and the fans who come to cheer on their friends while also giving students a chance to venture outside of their comfort zone.