Recreation and Sport Studies

Studying, Experiencing and Facilitating Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport through Wellness and Physical Activity

Ruihley & Billings (2012) address men’s and women’s motivation and consumption behaviors in fantasy sport

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B. K. Sun

What is Fantasy Sport? It is an networked activity differ from traditional off-line sport activity(eg, watching sport in TV), allowing participants to choose players from a given league and form their own team. It is highly interacted and user-friendly. “A fantasy team’s future successes are then based on how individual players perform in real games across many teams in a given league…” Ruihley & Billings (2012).

As society’s trends develop, fantasy sport follows, displaying its patterns to not only male players, but also female participants. Without further considering family bonding, maintain relationship, and building ties with A, B, and C, women can simply choose to play or not play on the basis of personal preference.

Indeed, for what I value the most is the principle of “Individual”. When comes to women’ sport involvement, layers of factors influence their choice. They value too many things over their truly desire as long as activities took place in a natural and real life setting. That’s what have been accepted as “common”. When Fantasy sport comes to play, however, things changed. As of choosing to play the game or not, women made their decision out of the seeking of real pleasure — like shopping consumption.

No matter how good their techniques are, they choose to play it, learn from it, and enjoy it. That’s to say, regardless of forms, fantasy sport provide women an access or outlet to pursue a pleasure.  According to the Fantasy Sports Trad Association, the number of women playing fantasy football in the United States and Canada more than doubled since 2007, reaching 8.3 million in 2014, while women now account for more than 20% of all fantasy football participants

Socialization and communication are things we born to pursuit, all the same for either male or female. With no doubt, it encourage people to participate fantasy sport, guiding them into the digital world of sport. But it is their “own” choice keep them going. As one female player said,“Fantasy is really the best tool to teach the sport because you learn the players, you learn the scoring, you’re invested every week, and by week three you’re a die-hard football fan.”

It is time for women to make a difference, and they are going to get it.

But there’s long way to go, as Melissa Jacobs, founder of The Football, responds to the challenges she has faced being a woman in a male-dominated industry, she said, “…still having to prove yourself and your knowledge. I still have to, after all this time. You still have to prove yourself from an X’s and O’s standpoint (Giana, 2016).”

Questions raised:

  • What would the sports world looks like if it’s no longer a male-dominated field?
  • What else do we need to promote a gender-friendly sport environment?
  • will we see a trending upward in the digital world of sport?


Ruihley, B. J. & Billings, A.C. (2012). Infiltrating the boys’ club: Motivations for women’s fantasy sport participation. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 48(4), 435-452.






UNB Faculty of Kinesiology: Bachelor of Recreation & Sports Studies, MBA in Sport & Recreation Management, and Master of Arts in Sport & Recreation Studies

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