“This is not a new problem,” Gordon says. “This issue has always been here. We’re seeing more and more people, especially athletes, talking about how it makes them feel. Your kit or whatever you wear is so closely linked to performance. Exercise should never be off the cards for us.
Wimbledon now plans to relax its all-white underwear rules for female players, while West Bromwich Albion and Manchester City Women have switched to navy and burgundy shorts, respectively, due to period concerns.
“Our focus for this campaign was Wimbledon, but it’s been great to see the change happening in other sports as a few football teams move away from white shorts,” says Holmes. “We want to see the official England women’s jersey take into account the eras for the 2023 World Cup and will continue to campaign against issues that deter young girls from participating in the sport at grassroots level.”
The England women’s rugby league team partnered with sports performance period wear brand Iceni during the World Cup on white shorts, and captain Emily Rudge said: “It was important for our players to be able to wear the iconic England jersey for a tournament. in our country.
“Our players were also aware of the obstacles girls face in sports due to their periods, and they wanted to use this moment to inspire future generations, to show young girls that menstruation is not something that will distract them from the joy that sports can bring. ”
‘I can focus entirely on competition’
British sprinter Jodie Williams, who specializes in the 400m, also wants to overcome some of the stigma associated with girls exercising during their period. In 2018, the first day of Williams’ term coincided with the European Championship. After dealing with some health issues, she was working really hard to get in shape and get into the team, but she was knocked out after running much slower than usual.
“I remember feeling very awkward and uncomfortable when I was on my period,” she says. “It definitely affected the way I acted because I was so paranoid that I was going to leak in the middle of the session. Now I’ll let my coach know and we’ll fix that by making time adjustments or sometimes changing a session.”
Williams is teaming up with Puma and feminine hygiene underwear brand ModiBodi to launch period sports leggings and shorts to encourage girls to stay in the gym. According to a global study conducted by the two brands, one in every two girls quit sports altogether due to fear of menstruation and urinary incontinence, while three-quarters experience anxiety and lack of concentration while playing.
“The ModiBodi x Puma series has been a game-changer in that I was able to complete my entire session without any added stress,” says Williams. “I have a lot of anxiety when it comes to racing on my period, I can often see a drop in performance. The underwear has definitely helped me feel more. [present]because one more thing I need to highlight has been reduced and I can fully focus on competing to the best of my ability.