Gorgeous Ballerina's Empowering Ad Smashes Hateful Comments
by Liz Alterman
Under Armour, maker of athletic apparel, recently launched a campaign that is a breath of fresh air for women of all shapes, sizes, ages and abilities.
The empowering "I Will What I Want" global marketing effort features the awe-inspiring American Ballet Theatre soloist Misty Copeland dancing while a young girl reads aloud a compilation of heartbreaking rejection letters ballerinas often receive.
The devastating missives tell the dancers in no uncertain terms that their bodies are "wrong." In fact, they go so far as to spell out that they lack "the right feet, Achilles tendons, turnout, torso length, and bust."
"You have the wrong body for ballet and, at 13, you are too old to be considered," the letters stated. Ouch!
But, Copeland, with the heart and will of a champion, proved that passion and determination can triumph over doubt any day.
Copeland didn't allow the words of rejection she faced as an African American who started dancing later in life to stand in her way. Her body wasn't the right type? Says who? Copeland's well-deserved success is the ultimate "I'll show them" comeback and a refreshing message of hope for women whose bodies don't conform to society's idea of "right."
Under Armour's campaign also features some other strong and equally-impressive ladies: World champion downhill skier Lindsey Vonn and U.S. Women's National Soccer Team player Kelley O'Hara, both Olympic competitors.
It is also exciting to see the sportswear maker recognizing it has a powerful audience in the female consumer.
Let's hope this inspiring ad encourages more women to embrace their bodies as they are rather than try to change them to fit someone else's definition of perfect.
Have you ever faced rejection because someone didn't think your body was the right type?
How did you handle it?