Some feel Lindsey Vonn too pretty to be the perfect role model

Posted By: The Ski Channel on February 19, 2010 2:27 pm

Lindsey Vonn and Julia Mancuso are both ultimate American sweethearts right now. They’ve won Olympic medals, 2 silvers for Julia and 1 gold so far for Lindsey, and proven that dreams can come true with enough hard work.

One of Lindsey’s goals is to be as good of a role model to kids as Picabo Street was to her as a child. When she was 9 years old, she met Picabo in a ski shop in Minnesota. Lindsey said, “I want to get kids involved. And I want to be a good role model like Picabo was to me”.

That’s great. We love to hear it. There are some, however, who have an interesting take on this. Is Lindsey Vonn too pretty to be a realistic role model for young girls? Check out the intriguing piece by Jennifer Graham Kizer by clicking here. Excerpt is below:

“I hope that my young daughters will one day develop some of Vonn’s fearlessness and determination. Here’s one teensy thing that troubles me, though: She also happens to be a Baywatch-caliber beauty. Now, I realize that her pin-up looks don’t help her to negotiate giant slaloms or increase her speed down a mountain. She’s earned her “best female skier” title through sheer hard work and athleticism. And it’s not her fault that she also happens to be gorgeous. But honestly, as a mom, I wish she wasn’t.

Among girls — so many girls — looking good is an all-consuming, practically essential goal. Boys aren’t immune to the phenomenon, but at least they’re not up against a clothes/makeup/accessories marketing machine (with messages delivered through TV, movies and magazines) that preys on girls’ insecurities.

How great is it that — for these two Olympic weeks, at least — 10-year-olds can see a woman lauded for her abilities alone? It’s awesome. But I imagine that those same 10-year-olds are also yearning to look as good as Vonn does in a bikini. Her Sports Illustrated photo spread was aimed at adults, of course. But any kid with a computer search engine can check it out, and dream about growing up to look just like Vonn. (And oh, yeah, maybe ski like her, too.)

With her inspiring story, Vonn still has an immense value as a role model. She’s actually had her eye on the gold since she was a kid. At 11, she was already so determined to achieve greatness that her family moved from Minnesota to Vail, Colorado for tougher training. (When I was 11, I was bouncing around my bedroom to “Eye of the Tiger.”) She’s an extraordinary person.

And I don’t blame Vonn for having a sexy side. Her looks are God-given, and who could blame her for flaunting them? But I still wish she wasn’t quite so…perfect. Girls today are no doubt inspired by her. But boy, they have one tiny bikini to fill.”