Hemmafru eller gymnastikdirektör eller både och? Kvinnliga gymnastikdirektörer, GCI och folkhemmet 1932–1952

  • Leif Yttergren The Swedish School of Sport and Health Sciences
Keywords: female physical education teachers, careers, marriages, life stories, kvinnliga gymnastikdirektörer, karriärer, äktenskap, livshistorier


Housewife or Physical Education Teacher? Or Both? Female Physical Education Teachers and the Welfare State, 1932–1952
The purpose of the article is to analyse the occupational careers and lifestyles of 32 female physical education teachers during the period 1932–1973. The results show that women could work both as physiotherapists and as physical education teachers. Many chose the former, which in Central Institute of Gymnastics’ (Gymnastiska centralinstitutet, GCI) own historical writing has been reduced in favor of the physical education teachers. The women came from the middle or upper middle class of society. They were around 20 years old when they started the two-year education at GCI, which attracted students from all over the country. They could combine marriage and children with work, even though it meant duplication and difficulty in bringing together the so-called “life puzzle.” Unlike many other women at this time, the physical education teachers chose the occupational career instead of becoming full time housewives. Their attitude can be explained by the occupational and caring character of the profession, but also with the strong loyalty that existed in the group and the GCI-spirit.

Author Biography

Leif Yttergren, The Swedish School of Sport and Health Sciences

Associate Professor of Sports History