Unbreakable Female Athlete was founded on the basis that female empowerment is vital in breaking down negative, harmful stereotypes surrounding female athletes. Being unbreakable derives from the idea that women must endure and overcome systemic inequalities, but we are tenacious. Despite barriers in facilities, apparel, media coverage, funding, salary, and government support, we remain unbreakable.
Jaecee Hall is the creator of Unbreakable Female Athlete. She is a senior at the University of Iowa on the Iowa Women's Rowing Team. She is majoring in psychology with a minor in international relations. Read her story below.
THE STORY OF UNBREAKABLE
Born in Ankeny, Iowa, I was raised surrounded by sports; spending every evening and weekend at the soccer fields for years (my parents would tell you I took my first steps with a soccer ball.) Growing up as a female athlete, I rarely found apparel that represented my female athlete identity – an important distinction to who I have become. As a current collegiate athlete, I have witnessed firsthand the disparities amongst male and female athletes, starting from a young age all the way through college. The inequalities, combined with the lack of representation for female athletes in the apparel industry, led me to create Unbreakable Female Athlete.
Unbreakable Female Athlete began at a kitchen table in my apartment in Iowa City, Iowa. After a practice one evening, I sat down with my two teammates: Emma Dabinett and Abbey Klostermann. I decided to create a shirt that expressed the importance of what the title "female athlete" meant to me. We brainstormed words that epitomized the true meaning of a female athlete. Ultimately, the word UNBREAKABLE stuck. Conversations around the underrepresentation of women's sports in media, television, social media, and newspaper revealed comments like, "Title IX still not enough huh, can't force people to watch a sport played better by men." Derogatory stereotypes surrounding women in athletics, as well as a lack of respect for women in athletics all fueled my fire to empower other female athletes. One idea and one t-shirt later, Unbreakable Female Athlete was born.
I hope to create a community of empowered female athletes that spans across the globe. A community that works to break the barriers placed in front of them, together. A community that provides support and encouragement to their fellow female athletes, no matter who they are or where they are from. Lastly, I hope to raise up this generation, and all future generations in a world where we as women are respected and equal. Unbreakable Female works to promote women in sport, as well as provide an unbiased platform to amplify female athletes' voices from all over the world.
Together, we are Unbreakable Female Athletes.
- Jaecee Hall, Founder & CEO