The Double Shift of Women’s Football Players

The world of women’s football is experiencing a golden age. However, a new report sheds light on a hidden reality for many elite players: the “double shift.” While captivating audiences with their skills and athleticism, 66% of players in the recent Women’s World Cup reportedly had to take time off from other employment to compete! This statistic underscores the significant challenge faced by many women footballers – balancing their passion for the sport with the demands of other jobs, childcare, or studies.

Beyond the Beautiful Game: The Juggling Act of Elite Players

Unlike their male counterparts, most female footballers don’t receive full-time salaries that allow them to focus solely on the sport. This necessitates a demanding balancing act. Imagine a world-class athlete training hours a day, competing at the highest level, all while juggling the responsibilities of another job or managing a family. The immense pressure and workload can take a toll on both physical and mental well-being, potentially hindering performance.

Building a Support System for Success: Beyond the Pitch

This report serves as a wake-up call for stakeholders in the world of women’s football. To create a truly sustainable and successful environment for players, a shift in approach is necessary. Here are key areas demanding attention:


Holistic Support

Evaluating a player’s life holistically, not just their performance on the field. This means recognizing the challenges of their double shift and providing resources and support that cater to their overall well-being.


Workload Management

Balancing the demands of football with other commitments creates a significant burden. Implementing strategies for workload management is crucial. This could involve collaborating with players to create personalized training programs and recovery plans that maximize performance while preventing burnout.


Embracing Flexibility

If full-time salaries aren’t yet the norm across the board, stakeholders such as leagues and clubs need to be flexible. This can include exploring alternative training schedules, childcare support systems, and educational opportunities designed around a demanding sporting career.

A Turning Point for Women’s Football: Investing in the Double Shift

The need to address the “double shift” isn’t simply a matter of fairness; it’s an investment in the future of women’s football. By acknowledging this challenge and developing solutions that prioritize player well-being and support dual commitments, we can unlock the full potential of this exciting sport. This report marks a crucial step in creating a more sustainable and supportive environment for women footballers. By ensuring they can excel both on and off the pitch, we can pave the way for even greater growth and success in the future of the beautiful game.