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The new superstars in sports are women, and pro beach volleyball player Gabrielle Reece is the hottest of them all. At six-foot-three, 170 pounds, Gabby Reece is at once beautiful and brutish, feminine and rowdy, accessible and intimidating--a woman who is exploding female stereotypes and redefining our image of the female athlete.
"A young girl doesn't get many chances to exercise the character muscle via sports, whereas for young boys, it's part of their everyday lives. For girls, it's especially good for them to be forced to work as a team with other girls, to work together under every possible condition--winning, losing, tired, grumpy, happy. It forces them to deal with unpleasant, ungracious emotions and get over it. It forces girls to rely on each other. It gives them confidence in other girls, which ultimately gives them confidence in themselves."
"Everything a woman does has an emotional component. Paying attention to my emotional side without surrendering to it is one of the toughest parts of playing professional sports."
"I don't like this 'Fear of Being Big' thing because it feeds into the general female thing of wanting to be less--less powerful, less assertive, less demanding, less opinionated, less present, less big." An odd hybrid of a book, Big Girl in the Middle is part model/volleyball player Gabrielle Reece's autobiography and part third-person chronicle of the misadventures of Team Nike across the 1996 professional beach volleyball circuit, for which Reece captained and played middle blocker. At 6'3" and 170 pounds, Reece cuts an imposing figure, as commanding on a magazine or book cover as she is on the court. She has a unique perspective on both of the public arenas in which she's played: as a top-flight athlete and accepted beauty, she smashes several stereotypes; how she's coped with those stereotypes, successfully spiking most of them, makes Reece an admirable role model. Her observations in this area serve up Big Girl's best attributes.