Questions about sex and physical sports

Are there any physical sports where there is no segregation by sex? I hesitate to use the term “organized”, because this is the SDMB, but in the Olympics, it seems like there’s always a “men’s” X and a “women’s” X, except for things like figure skating, which have “men’s single”, “women’s single”, and heteronormative pairs. This even happens in things like darts, where it wouldn’t seem like there would be any legitimate reason for it.

Are there any physical sports where women are better? Usually, the reason given for sex segregation in sports is that if everyone competed together, there wouldn’t be any female champions, but how about the reverse?

Oh, before I forget: Translations provided on request.

If you don’t mean events largely designed for women, like rhythmic gymnastics and synchronised swimming (think what you will about the implied concept of femininity), probably equestrian events, like show-jumping and dressage, but then there’s a question as to whether it’s the rider (male or female) or the horse that should get the credit - and maybe sailing?

Endurance sports? long-distance swimming and ultra-marathons? I’m not sure if they are segregated by sex, but (some) women seem to be better than (most) men. Equestrian sports aren’t segregated by sex but the horse provides the physical part so I don’t think that counts.

Car racing has women and men competing side-by-side in the same race.

I once read a trivia note that said rifle shooting and yacht racing are the only two Olympic events in which men and women compete directly.

From 1968 to 1980, men and women competed together in the pistol and rifle events. From '68 to '92 they competed together in skeet and trap. There are now separate men’s and women’s events. In the Paralympics, some shooting events are currently single-sex and some are mixed.

In the Society for Creative Anachronism, heavy armored combat, rapier combat and missile combat are not segregated by sex. The men do tend to dominate the heavy combat field, but I’m not sure about rapier or missile combat.

Also, since we’re talking about physical sports, I don’t know that missile combat (archery, knife- and axe-throwing) should be included here, as they aren’t shooting at each other. Well, not usually. Actually, yeah, let’s keep it on the list.

The SCA also has a distinction that some places allow children to compete against adults. The grups usually stomp the onlies there, too.

Curling usually has mixed teams but not at the Olympic level.

Interesting replies, everyone. I completely forgot about car racing and the successful female NASCAR drivers and so on, but ultramarathoning is both sex-segregated and male-dominated.

SCAdians are nuts, granted, but if FIFA can be considered organized so are they, and missile combat sports are certainly physical. They require fine motor coordination, and there might be some scientific dispute over whether males or females have an inherent advantage in fine motor skills and aiming. (That just links to one study, from 2005.)

(And, yes, I’m willing to accept driving as physical. None of you have ever seen my brother drive. Don’t drive like him, BTW.)

Interesting. I’m beginning to wonder if there’s something… special about Olympic sports and sex segregation.

Xgames are segregated.

Highlander games are segregated.

I’ve often wondered why their cannot be mixed teams in say relay races in track, team volleyball, or other sports where you have to have an equal number of men and women.

Fencing competitions are usually mixed at the local level, but always separated by sex at the highest levels (nationals, Olympics, etc.). It’s still largely a male-dominated sport, though. I’ve always thought that there isn’t any real reason that women should be better or worse at fencing than men. Strength, while needed, isn’t the most important thing. And I’ve known plenty of female fencers that can kick my ass, as well as lots of other men’s asses.

Anecdotally, on average women tend to fence differently from men. They fence more defensively, waiting for their opponent to attack and then reacting, rather than going on the attack themselves. Bouts between two women often take a long time.

That’s just a general statement of course, I’ve also known plenty of aggressive female fencers and passive male fencers.

dog sports are not segregated by sex, aka dock diving, agility, obedience.

Interesting. Do you know why they separated?

Last I heard Extreme Frisbee was not segregated.

Apparently open water swimming is an endurance sport where women on average tend to perform as well as or better than men in absolute terms at sub-elite levels, and not very far from men at world-class levels (unlike, say, marathon running, where even the top female runners are nowhere near competitive with the top male ones).

I know approximately nothing about the organized sport of Orienteering, but from what little I’ve heard about it, I’m not aware of any gender segregation in the sport. The linked Wikipedia doesn’t mention any such thing.

How about ballroom dancing? It is a sport, even if some folks don’t think so.

I used to orienteer and knew a couple of national high-achievers, although my own performance seldom attained even the lesser heights of mediocrity.

In championship orienteering, women and men run the same course at the same time, but the winning times are separated by gender and by age category.