Let’s talk about why we make fun of what teenage girls like. You may have seen this video about an obscure sport called Hobby Horsing, in which young female athletes use a hobby horse in various competitions, and have to complete tasks just like riding a horse.
Among them are dressage with freestyle, normal test and dressage championship. The freestyle was a freestyle task with the collected canter, the passage and the canter pirouettes. Balance, endurance, posture, difficulty, music and choreography were evaluated. In jumping, there were eight different tasks, including time, style or might jumping.
It may look fun at first glance, but the description of the tasks shows that it is a serious sport. And I must say that in some cases it looks quite sporty and in other cases elegant. Definitely something to train for, as we see in this video where one of the athletes comments on each segment of her performance and its challenges.
In most of the contexts and comments where I’ve seen this video of the 2023 Hobby Horse Championships on LinkedIn, there’s been a lot of ridicule, lame jokes, and banter. And it was exclusively men who made fun.
Is that because the athletes are almost exclusively teenage girls? And that begs the question, why do we hate what teenage girls like, care about, or obsess over? Laura Wass already asked this question in a post a few years ago.
We don’t make fun of boys who are often interested in video games and Star Wars. So why do we give teenage girls the signal that their interests are unworthy and downright ridiculous?
Considering that another “teenage girl obsession” is Taylor Swift, who is breaking concert records around the world thanks to her “Swifties”, is expected to earn $4.5 billion on her concert tour, and is even affecting the economy and inflation in the countries where she performs.
Rather than making fun of teenage girls – showing misogyny and stupidity – we should be encouraging them and exploring what teenage girls like. We could learn a lot from that.