Tennis legend Martina Navratilova on her dominant career, life's work in equality
2021-08-25
On the latest episode of the Rex Chapman Show with Josh Hopkins, the guys are joined by legendary tennis icon Martina Navratilova who was a fixture in the sport for 5 decades. Throughout her life, beginning in the former Soviet controlled Czechoslovakia, activism is critical to her and giving a voice to the voiceless, in search of equality for all. You can follow Martina Navratilova on Twitter and Instagram. 6:00 - Martina's relationship with Basketball Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman and how she took to training like a basketball player, playing pickup basketball along the way. It was that training that unlocked her potential to become the best player in the world. 9:30 - In light of mental health which has been so important to athletes today, we've come a long way from when Martina faced one of the hardest challenges of her life, leaving her home country and her parents behind. 12:30 - Martina says one of the most disappointing parts of her life is people constantly trying to undercut her, saying her dedication and hard work was just the results of steroids, or she was just some kind of robot. 14:30 - Martina describes what made Chris Evert such a great athlete, who would have excelled at any sport because of her mental fortitude. 16:45 - At the age of 12, Martina lived through the Prague Spring, when the Soviet Union felt threatened against an independant Czechoslovakia and sent soldiers in to prevent any form of democracy to develop. 21:30 - When Martina was told by her government that her tennis career was making her grow too close to a Western type of lifestyle, she knew she would have to defect in fear of never being able to leave again. 23:30 - Martina's first US tournament was where she resides today in Fort Lauderdale and the first thing she remembers was the big cars, and the coconuts growing on the trees. Everything was so just eye-opening and all she wanted to do was share what she saw with her family. 32:00 - It's been 40 years since Martina was outed. It was something she had to be quiet about as she was awaiting to get her US citizenship. In light of Billie Jean King's outing there was pressure from Tennis not to say anything in fear of losing sponsors. 41:30 - Martina thought about what life would be like with Twitter and now we have a generation that grew up not knowing what life was like without social media. Girls will continue to have more scrutiny than men, especially in a world where everyone is judged on a constant basis. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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