Editor Emma Ballard gives her thoughts on this year's International Women's Day and what it means to her.

I have mixed feelings on a day like International Women’s Day. Don’t get me wrong, I love the fact that it provides a platform to talk about, share and discuss topics and issues that women face across the world. But I also hate it (well dislike is a better word) with my main bugbear being the huge number of people, businesses and organisations that jump on the hashtag bandwagon to get their bit of air time.

It’s a well-organised jumping on a bandwagon affair, as you know that IWD always takes place on the 8th March.  (A lot of) Marketing and media teams rub their hands together at the thought of getting all the right messaging across to their customers and readers. I envisage the congratulatory patting on the back that goes on round the offices.

For me, I just feel pressure rather than relish the opportunity. You see, at Women & Golf, every day we’re looking to make sure that we provide a platform for women and girls' golf news, stories, reviews and opinions (plus all the other stuff).


As I wondered what I could write about this year’s theme #InspireInclusion, I came up with a blank. I’d argue that one of the main things we achieve with the W&G website and social channels is to inspire inclusion. I’d like to add at this point, that this is not why we’re here, it’s a by-product of what we do.

You would be amazed at how often I have meetings with brands and organisations who are under the impression that our main role is to get more women into golf. But that’s probably a story for another day.

If you want to know how other women feel about the state of the golf industry when it comes to inspiring inclusion, I asked four of my golf industry friends, if you want to find out how a business is looking to improve in the women’s space, then my chat with Elaine Wrigley makes things sound promising and if you’re new to golf and want to potentially be inspired to make change yourself, I spoke with Jessica Ormrod from Pitch.

What these three articles show is that to #InspireInclusion, you don’t just make women front and centre stage for one day, you make them part of your daily agenda, your marketing and advertising plans, you champion them and advocate for them.

And, if you truly want women's golf to thrive, you need to look back to something I wrote at the beginning of the year:

  • Use the word men or go genderless
  • Invest in women professionals both monetarily and with media exposure
  • Include women as members and fans

I should say at this point that I look forward to being proved wrong, but I bet the next time you see golf and women properly talked about in the wider golf industry will be in three months time on Women's Golf Day, or should that be #WomensGolfDay.