Stephanie Wallace and Camille Pageau pose for their first Ladies Commit photoshoot. Photos Submitted

Ladies Commit encourages female representation in snowboarding

Woman shredders come together to advocate for female representation in snowsports

Local snowboarder and boss babe, Camille Pageau, has launched a women focused project committed to promoting female content in snowboarding. As a sales person at Commit Snow and Skate, Pageau noticed a severe lack of representation for women in snow sports, both in store and on social media. Wanting to inspire women to be as involved in snow culture as men, she created an Instagram account called Ladies Commit.

“Every year I notice the disparity between men’s products and women’s, and this year I especially noticed that our Instagram, and most snowboarding related Instagrams, are filled up with dudes shredding, presented as the man, the boss, the king, the legend, etc. I decided we could just create our own space for ladies to feel the same way about snowboarding and products,” said Pageau.

After receiving an unexpected outpouring of support from the community of women riders in Fernie, Pageau quickly realized her project had the potential to extend beyond apparel. She now hopes the hands of Ladies Commit will reach into the broader realms of snow culture, inspiring women and altering patriarchal standards.

Touching on the way Instagram has the power to shape public opinion, Pageau sees this project as an opportunity to use social media as a vessel to encourage women to push for equal representation in mountain culture.

“If there would’ve been more female representation when I was young, I would’ve had a lot more confidence. It would have seemed more attainable and normal to try to be like strong women in the industry. We want girls to be proud to be girls and to feel like they can do anything and be whoever they want, no stigma,” said Pageau.

As a woman, it is difficult to build confidence and push personal ability in an industry that is as male dominated as snowboarding. Addressing the way she finds it challenging to feel a sense of belonging when riding with male dominant groups, Pageau hopes Ladies Commit will give women a chance to feel represented, supported, and encouraged to push themselves in snowboarding.

“We’re still at a stage where most of us weren’t raised to be reckless snowboarders or to push ourselves in the same way men were. Most of us are a bit more scared to try tricks and bigger things, or don’t show interest for fear of not being taken seriously,” said Pageau.

Taking inspiration from other projects that elevate women in the industry such as the Uninvited movie by Jess Kimura, Dream Job with Katie Burrell, or the new brand Pâle Skateboards from Québec, Pageau states the solution to being seen as equals in the sport lies in the increased inclusion of women in related content.

Ladies Commit is currently in its early stages, having recently followed through with their inaugural photoshoot. The first of many, Pageau seeks to run photoshoots every few weeks to keep content fresh and diverse. Throughout the winter, the content will be snowboard focused, with shots taken both on and off the slopes. In the summertime the content will be geared towards women in skateboarding. Pageau is open to incorporating content from other sports as well, so long as it reiterates the same sentiments.

Hoping to see the project extend beyond social media, Pageau is also in contact with women from Edge of the World, another snowboard shop in town. She hopes to begin Girl Gang ride days in the future, so that women can come together to fearlessly send big features and support each other in doing so.

“I just hope in the future we get the same importance in the snowboard industry and that of any other “extreme” sport. Imagine having as much choice for products as men, as many female pros, as many female only movies, as many female brands, as much advertising for female events, equal prizes, as many girls sponsored by local shops as men, and even as many girls working in board shops as boys,” said Pageau.

For any ladies looking to get involved with the project to make those imaginings a reality, send Pageau a direct message to @ladies.commit on Instagram.



reporter@thefreepress.ca

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