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Caroline FitzgeraldJuly 10, 2024 at 12:23 PM5 min read

Gen Z Loves Women’s Sports

Gen Z Loves Women’s Sports

Women’s sports are perfectly positioned to win with the world’s most diverse generation.



Texas player Mia Scott (10) high fives fans before Game 2 of the NCAA softball Women's College World Series Championship Series game between the Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and Texas Longhorns at Devon Park in Oklahoma City, Thursday, June, 6, 2024. Source: © SARAH PHIPPS/THE OKLAHOMAN / USA TODAY NETWORK


The landscape of professional sports has changed rapidly over the last few years for one huge reason: more women are involved in sports than ever before. From the field to the front office, women are represented in sports in ways the world has never seen - largely thanks to Title IX and the fruits of decades of labor of those fighting to make the sports world more inclusive of women. 


One other key change that’s happening in sports as the space shifts to include more women, is a change to who are the core customers of sports - aka fans. Specifically when it comes to women’s sports, fans are skewing much younger than ever before. One notable trend that is starting to unfold before our eyes is how women’s sports are resonating with a Gen Z audience, while conversely, this generation is starting to lose interest in some of the long-standing traditional men’s sports leagues that exist in the U.S. 


USATSI_23092968Washington Spirit goalkeeper Aubrey Kingsbury (1) signs one of her souvenir goalkeeper jerseys for a fan after the match against NJ/NY Gotham FCat Audi Field. Source: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


As the women’s sports industry aims to grow its customer base in years to come, let’s dig-in to better understand why women’s sports are currently winning with Gen Z so we can continue to serve and connect with a younger and more diverse generation of fans. 


1. Gen Z is all about authenticity and reliability - two boxes that women’s sports checks easily. One of the driving forces behind the surge in investment in women's sports is the authenticity and relatability of women athletes to younger fans. According to SportsPro, the presence of athletes like Olivia Dunne and Angel Reese in the list of the world's 50 most marketable athletes exemplifies this trend. Historically, women athletes have demonstrated their ability to outshine their male counterparts on platforms like TikTok and Instagram, being more active and authentic in showcasing their true selves on social media. This authenticity creates a stronger connection with Gen Z, who highly values genuine and relatable content.


2. Women’s sports are already showing up where Gen Z spends their time: aka on digital platforms like TikTok & Instagram. While women's sports have historically struggled for equitable coverage on linear TV. As of 2023, women’s sport still receives only 5% of linear media coverage. However, the women’s sports industry has successfully pivoted and taken advantage of the digital content spaces that haven’t been historically gate-keeped by traditional media outlets. In doing so, women’s sports have perfectly positioned their content in spaces where Gen Z can easily discover it. Research shows that Gen Z strongly prefers to consume sports content on non-traditional media platforms like YouTube, TikTok, Instagram & Shorts. The National Research Group’s recent newsletter about the influence of Gen Z pointed out that 8 out of 10 Gen Z individuals watch videos via these emerging platforms, making digital content the key to reaching this younger demographic. Whether it is viewed as strategy or just plain circumstance, the reality is that women’s sports are perfectly positioned to engage Gen Z viewers where they are already consuming content, rather than pushing them towards traditional cable options and pay-TV. 


@maybelline A beast and a beauty out on the field! 💋 @Ilona Maher does it all with Super Stay Matte Ink on her lips 24/7 ❤️ Ilona is using shade 'Pioneer'!💥#maybellinepartner #beastbeautybrains ♬ original sound - Maybelline NY


3. Gen Z and women’s sports both highly value diversity, equity and inclusion. In 2020, Nneka Ogwumike and Sue Bird wrote an op-ed for Phenomenal Media that included the following statement, “By simply existing in spaces that weren’t built for us, women athletes are doing something revolutionary.” Sports - and sports culture - has historically been built by men, for men, centering the athlete and the entire industry as inherently male. For this reason, every time a woman shows up to participate or work in sports, she is exhibiting activism, and fighting for a place in a world that was not meant for her. Beyond simply existing though, many women's sports deliberately use their sports platforms to lead social movements to level the playing fields for individuals of all genders, races, and abilities. Diversity, equity and inclusion are fundamentally baked into the core identity of the women’s sports industry, which has attracted a more socially conscious fan base than that of men's sports. When it comes specifically to Gen Z, this generation is the most diverse generation in history and like women’s sports, holds a strong fundamental belief in creating diverse, equity & inclusive spaces. Naturally, there is an organic strategic alignment between the inherent nature of women’s sports and the general preferences and values of Gen Z.


The symbiotic relationship between women's sports and Gen Z represents a significant and important shift in the sports business landscape. The authenticity, digital positioning, and socially conscious nature of women's sports align seamlessly with the values and preferences of Gen Z. As more brands look to connect with a younger audience, it’s going to be tough to ignore the dynamic intersection of women’s sports and Gen Z. 



About Caroline Fitzgerald
Caroline Fitzgerald (she/her) is a contributing writer for Parity and the CEO & Founder of GOALS - a women's sports marketing consultancy & media platform. Caroline launched GOALS in 2020 after recognizing that there was an opportunity to help brands, networks and fans see the social and economic value that can come from investing in women's sports. GOALS also produces the leading women's sports business podcast - 🎙️The Business Case for Women's Sports, which is presented by Ally. For more information on GOALS, visit or follow on InstagramLinkedInFacebookX (formerly Twitter) and Threads


About Parity
Minority-founded in 2020, Parity's mission is to close the gender income and opportunity gap in professional sports. By developing high-impact collaborations between brands, professional women athletes and their fans, Parity has proudly put more than $3.5 million in the pockets of women athletes, attracting dozens of brands to the movement in the process. The platform offers connections to more than 1000 women athletes from 80+ sports, including well over 200 Olympians and Paralympians. For more information on how to tap into the rapidly rising influence and popularity of women athletes, visit or follow us on InstagramLinkedInFacebookX (formerly Twitter) and Threads




Caroline Fitzgerald

Caroline Fitzgerald is a contributing writer for Parity and the CEO & Founder of GOALS - a women's sports marketing consultancy & media platform. After launching GOALS in 2020, Caroline has quickly become a force for good and thought leader in the women's sports space.