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Mari Kristin Sisjord and Elsa Kristiansen

The present study explores Norwegian female and male elite wrestlers’ perceptions of media coverage of wrestling and of themselves as athletes. In-depth interviews were conducted with four female and four male elite wrestlers. Data analysis revealed that the wrestlers experienced media attention as limited and gender stereotyped, with a dominant focus on hegemonic masculinity. In addition, the wrestlers perceived that media coverage distorted their sport performance by focusing on sensational aspects and scandals rather than on actual performances and results. Some of the athletes’ descriptions of representations in the sports media and commercial television illustrated that, in their perception, they were viewed more as media clowns than as serious athletes.

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Kari Fasting and Mari-Kristin Sisjord

This study attempts to measure quantitative and qualitative dimensions of leisure time in an effort to see how they are related to the sport participation rates of women and men. Using data collected from a sample of 83 women and 128 men—all of whom were employed, married parents—it was found that women did more housework than men did but the time spent on housework did not account for differences in participation rates for either women or men. Most important in explaining participation in sports among women was the average number of hours per week their spouses were away from home in the evenings. On the basis of these findings it was concluded that the quantitative dimensions of leisure were not associated with sport participation rates; however, the qualitative dimensions of leisure were associated with barriers to participation for women but not for men. The data suggested that compared to men, women were less likely to feel they had the freedom to participate in sport. This difference was explained in terms of a combination of factors including differential socialization and different patterns of motivation related to sport participation among women and men.