Covid-19, the virus that was the cause behind a global pandemic that began in 2020, has been the subject of nearly every news article for over a year. It has changed everything about our day-to-day lives, including family gatherings, public etiquette and the way we conduct school and work. One specific area of change comes in the form of something that has brought people together for years; sports.
At the beginning of the pandemic, many believed that it would blow over, which wasn’t accurate, as we now see. In the sports world (in the United States), it started with Bellator postponing events. This was the start of several games being postponed— and finally canceled— as the pandemic worsened and the question of safety became the leading concern. On March 23, 2020, the Olympics were canceled due to safety reasons, and sports fans around the world were wondering what would come next.
Once Covid began to level out and be slightly more controllable, sports began again with precautions in place, as well as new guidelines and restrictions. Currently, these restrictions are becoming more relaxed, with fans being allowed to watch the games and fewer masks being worn in the crowds. However, could Covid change the way we play and interact with sports forever?
One specific impact Covid had was a strong negative impact on women’s sports. The gap between men’s and women’s sports has been prevalent for many years, but the pandemic pushed the issue into the forefront of worries for women’s sports. Because of the pay gap, there weren’t a sufficient amount of resources to fall back on when the seasons were canceled, and some believed that women’s sports would not survive through 2020. But, the scare was enough to push forward movements to lead to more monetization of women’s sports, which could be a turning point in the history of sports.
Another thing that Covid promoted was previously unused ways of covering sports. New camera shots and angles allow at-home viewing to be cinematic and more immersive than years past, creating a better experience for viewers. The camera work was experimented with earlier in the 2000s, but never took off. Now it seems that it may be here to stay.
So, Covid certainly caused issues worldwide, but there were also some good developments to come from it as well.