For me, pregnancy was a strange state of being so present and so aware of my body, while at the same time being separate from it. This experience really did a number on me during those nine months and during the postpartum period.
I discovered that tennis is not only about having the privilege to buy a racquet and specialised tennis shoes and access a tennis court. It is also about how one performs and expresses oneself, requiring players to follow a particular aesthetic that enforces gender binaries.
Lack of women’s representation in policy-making institutions has allowed men, often with minimal understanding and empathy, to decide what women in sports can or cannot wear. As a result, these policies have ended up undermining women’s comfort as well as agency.
The issue with the ‘Aunty’ body arises from a deeply misogynistic and dehumanising understanding of women. In this imagination the woman, whom the world now addresses as ‘Aunty’, has basically served her purpose of marriage and child bearing, and is hence rendered useless.