Top Quotes from Billie Jean King

Sports teaches you character, it teaches you to play by the rules, it teaches you to know what it feels like to win and lose-it teaches you about life.

Billie Jean King

Champions keep playing until they get it right.

Billie Jean King

A champion is afraid of losing. Everyone else is afraid of winning.

Billie Jean King

Be bold. If you’re going to make an error, make a doozy, and don’t be afraid to hit the ball.

Billie Jean King

I think self-awareness is probably the most important thing towards being a champion.

Billie Jean King

No one changes the world who isn’t obsessed.

Billie Jean King

It’s just really important that we start celebrating our differences. Let’s start tolerating first, but then we need to celebrate our differences.

Billie Jean King

Women’s sports is still in its infancy. The beginning of women’s sports in the United States started in 1972, with the passage of Title 9 for girls to finally get athletic scholarships.

Billie Jean King

Ever since that day when I was 11 years old, and I wasn’t allowed in a photo because I wasn’t wearing a tennis skirt, I knew that I wanted to change the sport.

Billie Jean King

When they take surveys of women in business, of the Fortune 500, the successful women, 80% of them, say they were in sports as a young woman.

Billie Jean King

Tennis is a perfect combination of violent action taking place in an atmosphere of total tranquillity.

Billie Jean King

Everyone has people in their lives that are gay, lesbian or transgender or bisexual. They may not want to admit it, but I guarantee they know somebody.

Billie Jean King

It is very hard to be a female leader. While it is assumed that any man, no matter how tough, has a soft side… and female leader is assumed to be one-dimensional.

Billie Jean King

I was always in the tennis business-from 1968. I was in tournaments and also on World Team Tennis teams as well.

Billie Jean King

I like entrepreneurial people; I like people who take risks.

Billie Jean King

That is where the power, opportunity, and choice come from-when you have money. Money equals opportunity. There is no question.

Billie Jean King

I knew after my first lesson what I wanted to do with my life.

Billie Jean King

I wanted to use sports for social change.

Billie Jean King

I would love to be a player today. I had the right personality for it.

Billie Jean King

Sports are a microcosm of society.

Billie Jean King

Women get the attention when we get into the men’s arena, and that’s sad.

Billie Jean King

If your partner wants to be private, you have to respect that.

Billie Jean King

Victory is fleeting. Losing is forever.

Billie Jean King

In the seventies we had to make it acceptable for people to accept girls and women as athletes. We had to make it okay for them to be active. Those were much scarier times for females in sports.

Billie Jean King

They’re not put on earth to be martyrs; they have to want to come out. It depends on your culture, where you work, where you live. Each person’s circumstances are unique.

Billie Jean King

It’s fun to meet people from throughout the world who you don’t have to explain yourself to.

Billie Jean King

I have a lot to say, and if I’m not No. 1, I can’t say it.

Billie Jean King

In 1973, a woman could not get a credit card without her husband or father or a male signing off on it.

Billie Jean King

The old boy network is still very strong and very true. Just look at the stock exchange and how many men and women are there. It is still very much run by men.

Billie Jean King

Men still get a lot more opportunity. It is still a big part of the old boy network. They have more companies they can get money from.

Billie Jean King

When I was outed, it was like, That’s done.

Billie Jean King

A girl didn’t get an athletic scholarship until the fall of 1972 for the very first time.

Billie Jean King

Any therapist will tell you that when you’re ready, you will come out. To be outed means you weren’t ready.

Billie Jean King

I always liked co-ed events best so we have two men and two women on each team.

Billie Jean King

I always wanted to help make tennis a team sport.

Billie Jean King

I didn’t really care if I had a coach that much, me personally, because I was brought up to think for myself.

Billie Jean King

I like putting money back into what made my life, and tennis has been great to me.

Billie Jean King

I love to promote our sport. I love grass-roots tennis. I love coaching. I love all parts of the sport. I love the business side.

Billie Jean King

I think it’s impossible to judge whether another person should come out. You just hope they will on their own time and their own terms.

Billie Jean King

I think younger players probably just think they are who they are-they don’t think about coming out. Unless you’re number one in the world, nobody cares, usually.

Billie Jean King

I used to be told if I talked about my sexuality in any way that we wouldn’t have a tennis tour.

Billie Jean King

I would just never out anybody. I think everyone has to find it in their own way and their own time.

Billie Jean King

In 1973, women got 59 cents on the dollar; now we are getting 74 cents on the dollar. In the area of finance and business, we are at 68 cents on the dollar.

Billie Jean King

Martina and I went through a very bad five years. Everything’s very good between us now, but it was a long haul.

Billie Jean King

Martina’s gone with people who don’t want to be out, and it drives her crazy because she’d rather be open.

Billie Jean King

Men can have a huge turnover of sponsorship and still survive a lot better than the women. But the women’s ratings are better, at least at home in the United States than in the men’s tennis.

Billie Jean King

At 62 you want to keep moving; that’s important.

Billie Jean King

The main thing is to care. Care very hard, even if it is only a game you are playing.

Billie Jean King

I will tell you King’s First Law of Recognition: You never get it when you want it, and then when it comes, you get too much.

Billie Jean King

There is no life for girls in team sports past Little League. I got into tennis when I realized this, and because I thought golf would be too slow for me, and I was too scared to swim.

Billie Jean King

When we reach the point where the women athletes are getting their pick of dates just as easily as the men athletes, then we’ve really and truly arrived. Parity at last!

Billie Jean King