Kathrine Switzer challenged the men-only rule at the Boston Marathon in 1972, and opened up the path for women to run.
ALL around the world, Kathrine Switzer is known as the Marathon Woman for paving the way for women to run alongside men in marathons. Switzer was not only pivotal in opening up the Boston Marathon – the world’s oldest annual marathon – to women in 1972, she was also hugely responsible for getting women’s marathon into the Olympic Games in 1984.
But when Switzer signed up for the Boston Marathon in 1967, all she really wanted to do was run. And maybe to prove to herself and those around her that women were not too fragile to run the 42km distance of the marathon, which at the time was an all-male affair.