That’s how long Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 reads. Just 37 words.
Crazy how so few words – one long sentence, really – could fundamentally and seismically change the landscape of sports forever, providing access and opportunity once widely thought to be out of reach. Even crazier? Tthe impact of a sentence whose original intent 50 years ago surely was not centered around a game, and the catalyst for progress it proved to be.
Progress isn’t a straight line. It can be quiet, methodical, or it can come at you in crashing waves. That’s how momentum shifts, too. It’s not always the first hit, the one goal, the singular moment that instantly changes the game.
But it is often the catalyst.
And what follows can be substantial. Monumental. Even transformational.
Sports constantly evolve. The pursuit of excellence is an unending refinement of skill, an unrelenting drive to be better, a competitive fire that challenges the boundaries of the game and evokes an equally impassioned response.
Challenging boundaries? Impassioned response? Sounds like the catalyst for what became Title IX.
And those 37 words served as a catalyst for 50 years worth of progress. Our challenge now is to keep the momentum going. Keep pushing. Keep striving. Keep running. Keep celebrating, championing, uplifting and inspiring girls and women everywhere to do what no one yet knows is possible. Keep leveling up our own expectations.
It has happened time and time again over the past 50 years. It’ll happen again, and when it does, there’s a good chance it’ll happen here.