Believe it: #tallgirlproblems are real

By MECHELLE VOEPEL via ESPN | Nov 16, 2016, 12:41 PM ET

ESPN the Magazine's Nov. 28 "Tall Ball" issue, which focuses on the varied aspects of height and sport, prompted us to ask around about #tallgirlproblems. Not to stereotype, but tall women often have some specific challenges that they deal with. But even the most annoying stuff wouldn't make any of the women we spoke with want to give up even an inch of their height.

It's just sometimes ... hey, the next time you see a tall woman, please try to refrain from asking horrible corny stuff like "How's the weather up there?" All tall women thank you in advance.

Brianna Turner, 6-foot-3, Notre Dame forward

"It's mostly things like sleeves not being long enough. Or knee-high boots that are not knee-high at all on me. And I always say when we do push-ups it's harder if you are tall and have longer arms. Or doing pull-ups."

Alaina Coates, 6-4, South Carolina center

"My top pet peeve is finding jeans long enough. I'll just have to roll them up and make them look like they're supposed to be that way. So when it's really cold, my ankles will be freezing.

"You can shop online, but if they don't fit right, you have to send them back. And most of the time, I'm just like, 'Forget it.' "

Lisa Leslie, 6-5, former Los Angeles Sparks star and Naismith Hall of Famer

"I would say my No. 1 tall girl problem is that people have to ask me every day, 'Do you play basketball?' I've had people make comments about my height every day of my life. That can get annoying. I'm thankful for it; I used it. You don't go around commenting on someone's weight or size, so it's just really annoying. It's the kind of thing that people should just say to themselves: 'Wow, she's really tall.' But I don't need to be informed that I'm tall. I get it."

Tina Thompson, 6-2, WNBA's all-time scoring leader

"I've been blessed to be able to find clothes and shoes; for me that hasn't been that difficult. Probably the most annoying are the awkward, lame conversations and the clich? one-liners. Like, 'Is the view better up there?' What do you say to stuff like that?

"Just say hello, introduce yourself and let's move on to politics, sports, whatever you want to talk about. The lead-in with the tall-girl joke was very unnecessary."

Sylvia Fowles, 6-6, Minnesota Lynx, 2016 WNBA defensive player of the year

"A lot of jeans that come in longer lengths have flared legs. I hate flares. I hate wide legs. I feel like all tall-girl jeans should be skinny. So when I do find a pair I like that fits, I buy them in every color.

"If someone asks me the basketball question, I change it up. I say, 'Oh, actually I play water polo.' And nobody really wants to talk to me much about that."

Swin Cash, 6-2, just retired from New York Liberty

"Airplanes would be first. My jeans would be another. I get mad all the time, because jeans just aren't cut properly.

"Then there's the 'Tall guys like short girls, and vice versa' ... that can be a tall girl problem.

"With the standard hotel-room shower, and you're trying to wash your hair, you have to maneuver around.

"You are always going to get asked if you play volleyball or basketball. And if you were to say that you didn't play sports, people look at you with a kind of disdain, like, 'You wasted your height!' Your height just makes them think you automatically have to be an athlete."

Nneka Ogwumike, 6-2, Los Angeles Sparks, 2016 WNBA MVP

"One of the shortcomings of being tall -- ha ha -- is that you can never swing your feet when you're sitting on a stool.

"And you always have to be at the back of a photo. I like being in the front. That's why a lot of times in photos, you see me lying down in front. I want to be seen, you know?

"Pants aren't so bad, because nowadays there are a lot of different outlets to buy from. I do almost all of my shopping online, and the clothes are super trendy, which is awesome. I love it.

"Another huge issue is sitting on airplanes. Actually, though, I'm not sure that's just a tall girl problem. That's like a human-rights issue. (Laughs)

"I also feel like climbing stairs is a little more difficult for us, because of the leverage. And I feel more tired after stairs, and that's confusing to me because I'm athletic.

"People always assume I'm a basketball or volleyball player. One guy, though, came up and asked me if I was a ballerina. I said, 'Are you being serious?' and he seemed like he was.

"The short guys are always like, 'I love me a tall girl.' And it's like, 'Seriously?'

"I love shoes, and people will say, 'Why are you wearing heels? You're tall already.' And I said, 'That has nothing to do with me wearing heels.' So that's pretty annoying."

On peoples' reactions to seeing her with sister Chiney Ogwumike, who is 6-3: "It's always like, 'Where are you guys from?' and I'm like, 'Is that question just because we're tall?'

"But overall, I have no issues with it. It's a beautiful thing."

Jantel Lavender, 6-4, Los Angeles Sparks, 2016 WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year

"The biggest one is clothes, although it's gotten better over the years. But you can't just go into a store -- if something comes up -- and find pants that fit. Or getting a dress that's long enough for your arms. Or shoes -- you can't just go get a nice pair of heels to wear to an event.

"I shop at -- they have a tall section that is amazing. I have so many clothes now that I'm never caught off guard."

"I would say toilets are pretty low. It's just so far down, and then the stall doors aren't that high all the time, so your head's sticking up. But I think it becomes second-nature for us to adjust."

Candace Parker, 6-4, Los Angeles Sparks, 2016 WNBA Finals MVP

"I'm against stereotypes, so I hate fitting the stereotype. People are like, 'Oh, you must play basketball.' And I'm like [lowers voice and sounds a bit disgusted], 'Yes.'

Has girls' embarrassment over being tall changed? "I hope it has. My daughter is around so many tall women, I don't think it registers to her that she's dwarfing her classmates. She's tall; she holds her shoulders back with pride. We tease her about her big feet, and she loves them and her long legs.

"I think it's generational. I wasn't always the happiest being as tall as I was, but I learned to accept it and then love it."

A'ja Wilson, 6-5, South Carolina forward

"Other than clothes sometimes, I don't really see any problems with being tall."

Read the original article

Add comment