You don’t need to look any further than last week’s news cycle to see proof that a girl can throw a ball: Erin DiMeglio, the first female quarterback to play high school football in Florida, made a splash by taking a spot on her team. But some research indicates it’s an uphill battle.

It may be a borderline-offensive schoolyard taunt, but “throws like a girl” has an element of truth. Studies suggest that girls often don’t throw as well as boys. (Boys v. girls is a little diminutive, but it’s an important distinction; we’ll get to that.) In fact, the “throwing gap,” as it’s called, is one of the biggest differences between the genders. It’s not just the largest gap in physical activities–although it’s the largest gap in that field–it’s possibly the most salient gap. Period.

Literature on this put forward by Janet Hyde, professor of psychology and women’s studies at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, for example, has shown the disparity. Her Gender Similarities Hypothesis states, in short, that the two genders are more alike than they are different, and there’s a lot of data to support the idea. (You can, and should, read about how similar we are here.)

Read more at PopSci

Published On: September 18, 2012

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