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Fresh Picks: Lionesses and Challenging Gender Biases

14th July 2023


This month we’re looking at women in sport creative campaigns. Read on to find some of our favourites.

Gemma’s Pick: Nike’s Phantom Luna

In anticipation of the upcoming World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, Nike has introduced the Phantom Luna, an innovative women’s boot designed through extensive research and development. The highlight of the boot is the revolutionary Nike Cyclone 360 traction pattern, strategically placed near the toes to enhance agility, precision, and confidence on the pitch.

This pattern is particularly beneficial in reducing the risk of ACL injuries, a concern prevalent in women’s football. The Phantom Luna also priorities comfort and fit, featuring a high collar and a larger touch zone, all while maintaining a soft and flexible feel. Moreover, the design takes into account the unique foot shapes of women players, offering adjustability and support for high arches and flat feet. Finally, a boot made for women that is actually tailored to women.

Chris’s Pick: The W Series

The series might have been short-lived and relaunched as the new F1 academy, but the W Series still had some great branding. The W Series was a ground-breaking women’s racing series with serious ambition: To change the face of motorsport. Quite literally. Pangaea created a brand that not only reflected the sport but also differentiated the series from others within the sport.

Georgie’s Pick: ITV’s The Pride Has Arrived

This month, I’ve picked ITV’s 60-second ad ahead of their coverage of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup titled ‘The Pride Has Arrived’. The ad shows lionesses calmly prowling through the city as people stare in awe as they go about their daily lives. I like how it’s a reflection of how the game will capture people’s attention when the tournament starts and how it could possibly foreshadow the England team’s calm confidence in their upcoming matches. I also like the fact that the ad uses a combination of computer-generated lionesses as well as real ones filmed against a green screen in South Africa.

Beth’s Pick: WNBA Las Vegas Aces

Although men’s sports mostly dominate airtime and sponsorship deals, recent years have seen a lot more investment in the women’s side of things. More accessible coverage of women’s sports has led to increased viewership and ticket sales, which in turn leads to more money and funding for teams. Progress is still slow for women’s sports as a whole, but some teams are starting to use that extra income to look after their female athletes and 2022 WNBA champions the Las Vegas Aces recently became the first team in the league’s history to build their own multi-million dollar training facility.

It includes a player lounge and locker room, a film study room and two practice courts as well as facilities for recovery, rehabilitation and nutrition. These training perks have been available to most men’s teams for years, but becoming the first women’s team to do so is a huge step for the game and for women’s sport in general. Not only will it aid in better performance and recovery for the athletes with access to it now, but it will hopefully set the standard for current and future professional teams and encourage them to strive for equality in all areas of sport.

Henry’s Pick:

Christiano Ronaldo has scored the most goals in international football; Peter Shilton has the most caps for England; The next world cup is in 2026. These are all incorrect facts returned by Google searches. Due to human bias, search engines prioritise male athletes in their search results. Correct the internet is a campaign launched to help make sportswomen more visible. The super slick website shows common biased search results for different sports, and makes it super easy to report these results as biased / incorrect to the search engines. The more people that do this, the more accurate the results will be and the internet will be a more balanced place!

Laura’s Pick: This Girl Can With You

This Girl Can was launched back in 2015 as a campaign to encourage women and girls to get moving, regardless of their size and ability. You’ve likely seen their powerful, positive and encouraging adverts. The most recent campaign ‘This Girl Can With You’ launched earlier this year and focuses on closing the enjoyment gap by creating environments where women can exercise and thrive. It’s a really important campaign as research shows that women face barriers, obstacles, intimidation and less welcoming environments when it comes to sport and exercise.