If you’ve never heard of quidditch, you probably never read or watched Harry Potter. The sport was adapted from the novels almost twelve years ago. Substitute PVC tubes for broomsticks and a living human for the flying snitch and you have yourself a fast-paced, full-contact sport suited for muggles. And it’s mixed-gender.
Yes, you read that right. Full-contact and mixed-gender. This league cares about inclusivity. In fact, to compete, teams must have a mix of genders on pitch at all times.
This summer, Quidditch Canada’s national team is heading to the 2018 IQA Quidditch World Cup in Florence, Italy. And yes, you read that right too: there’s a world cup of quidditch. Knix is proud to sponsor the bra-wearing members of the team, and we were thrilled to sit down with them to find out more about the sport and what it’s really like playing on a mixed-gender team.
“It’s a draw for some people to be on a full-contact sport with people of different genders,” the team’s chaser, Katie, tells us. “I personally felt very equal when I was playing because with other mixed-gender sports, if someone knocks you down, the guys might feel really bad. But in quidditch, if you get knocked down, you get yourself back up.”
“It can be rough,” says Claire, another chaser. “You’re going up against athletes that may have 100 pounds and a foot on you. Our female players have handled the contact really well. I always encourage all genders that if you see someone with the ball, it doesn’t matter if they're a girl or if they’re smaller than you—you have to hit them. But I was eager for the contact aspect of the game. It’s particularly satisfying when you can take down someone who is 200 pounds.”
Katie has also found the sport to be good for confidence-building in women. “Society has [historically had] females pegged as not being good at sports, and some women have a tougher time with confidence. By continuing to give them more responsibility, it helps to raise their confidence. My team, this past season, had equal numbers of female and male players. It was just great, like we’re all playing equally well here, with people playing to their strengths.”
As for their relationships with the guys? Well, they're just glad these players are on their side of the pitch.