golf by Julia Ismail March 28, 2018
On first glance Paige Spiranac may seem like your typical Instagram baddie influencer: luxurious scene settings, a #goals worthy body, and a sports theme following her photos and travels.
But Paige isn’t your ordinary Instagram influencer. Her golf-centric travels aren’t an accidental brush or add-on for her Instagram following. Paige is a professional golfer.
And a quick peek of her Instafeed proves that she’s worked pretty damn hard to get where she is.
Paige recently gave a speech at the North Phoenix Boys and Girls club as a part of the Cybersmile anti-bullying campaign she is a part of. She opened up about the bullying she’s endured throughout her life.
“When you have a lot of followers, you get the good and bad,” she told the kids. “So I had a career out of it. But unfortunately, I had people hating on me every single day.”
Despite what social media portrays, her golf career started very young.
At the ripe age of 12 years old, an injury to Paige’s kneecap prevented her from pursuing her Olympic gymnast career. But after being recognized by her father and coach for her potential in golf, she decided to pursue it. Her professional timeline is recorded by AZ Central,
“Spiranac kept winning. She became a top-20 junior player in the world. A top-5 college recruit. The two-time West Region Player of the Year. Twice an All-American. A professional career awaited.”
By the time she got into college, Paige had started her Instagram account posting videos that followed her golf journey. It was only after Total Frat Move posted an article titled “The Whole World Is About To Fall In Love With Paige Spiranac,” that her Instagram following started to take off, gaining her thousands of followers.
Now, she’s opened up to The Guardian about the discrimination she’s been facing in her sports community as a popular face on social media.
“The people who are saying golf is progressive, if you look at them they all look the same. They are all middle-aged men. They obviously feel accepted. When you go to a golf course and look around, you see a bunch of guys, everyone looks like you so you are going to feel great. If you are walking in as a woman, you don’t feel the same.”
Due to her social influence, she isn’t being treated with the respect and caliber she should be.
“People seem to think I got where I am because of the clothes that I wear. That’s unfair to me and unfair to all of my accomplishments. I probably do more community service than any other professional golfer. For people to say: ‘You only show some cleavage, that’s why you have what you have,’ is unfair.”
It sounds all too familiar. Rather than focusing on the accomplishments of women, Paige is dealing with the backlash that usually comes with being beautiful as well as extremely talented at what she does.
“That’s the injustice that we face every day as women and I see it a lot in golf.”
With 1.2 million followers on the ‘Gram, there are bound to be some haters. Harassment isn’t a new scandal to Paige, but this time, she’s aiming to fight back.
Her golf career lives on as she drives herself to improve everyday. She continues to work on her golf game while simultaneously enjoying making a name for herself.
Mistreatment of women in sports is an old theme, but Paige reminds us, above all, that women still have a voice. It’s your choice to use it.