Baseball is South Korea’s national pastime. The Korean Baseball organization consists of nine teams spread out over the country.
“A couple of years ago, men versus women were 60/40. But this year it looks like 55/45. And the number of the female fans is going to be increasing more and more,” noted Nick Choi, spokesman for the LG Twins team of Seoul.
The stadiums rock at games as the fans sing, chant and hit inflatable tubes together. Everyone seems to enjoy the event.
Seo Yeon-mi, a fan of the LG Twins, has been attending games for 15 years. She and her best friend almost never miss a game. “I got an annual ticket and I come to almost every home game,” she says.
Jay Kim is a businesswoman who flew home to South Korea during a short holiday break to see her team play. “I’m a kind of a diehard baseball fan,” she shouts over the noise at the stadium. “I live in Dubai now but I came here for a holiday for two days to watch this baseball game.”
Kim Ha-eun is one of the newer female fans. “I never watched (live) baseball games before and today is the first time watching an actual game and this is just wonderful,” she says. “It’s really entertaining and watching the cheerleaders dancing is really really cool! I just love it.”
Ha-eun was hooked after just one game. The next game she attends she plans to be wearing an LG Twins jersey.
So what is the reason for the increase in female fans?
When asked, many will mention the energy and roar of the crowd and the dancing skill of the cheerleaders. Some talk about the play on the field. But all agree on the main reason.
“LG Twins players are very handsome,” exclaims Choi. “That is why there are a lot of female fans.”
“All the players are so attractive,” says Kim.
“We have an organized cheering team,” says Choi. “We also provide different activities between each inning like kissing time, beer drinking contests and those kinds of events.”
And the teams have noticed another plus that comes with the growing numbers of female fans.
“If you attract women to the stadium, you attract men as well,” says Choi with a laugh. “In Korean culture, whatever a woman wants to do, that is what a man will do.” Image/CNN