Ryan Bridge: Female athletes should be allowed to wear what they want

OPINION: I know nothing about sport but for this sports story you don't really need to. 

It's one of the biggest stories in the world right now - in the world of beach handball. 

Yes, beach handball. It's a bit like soccer with your hands, played on what looks like a beach volleyball court. 

But the story is not about the players' prowess, the score, or even the sport. It's about what the women are wearing. 

The Norwegian women's beach handball team have been penalised for wearing shorts, like their male counterparts, instead of bikini bottoms.

The team was fined $2500 for "improper clothing" at the European Beach Handball Championships last week.

Yes, bikini bottoms. They were fined for not showing their upper thighs. 

Males are allowed to play in tank tops and shorts no longer than 10 centimetres above the knee. 

Women must expose their midriff and wear bikini bottoms. And bikini bottoms are basically colourful lingerie - undies.

They're basically being made to play this bizarre game in the sand, in their undies, in front of thousands of people. And they're fined if they don't. 

It's not the only example of female athletes putting up with some weird rules and conventions in sport. 

Two-time Paralympic world champion Olivia Breen was told her shorts were too revealing at a long jump competition recently - she was told to buy new shorts.

I must say I find it all very strange. Let women wear what they're comfortable with. 

Unless a uniform can offer a sporting advantage, like in swimming, then who cares what athletes of any gender are wearing. 

This year's games will see a record number of women competing, about 49 percent of all athletes. I say wear what you want.

Ryan Bridge is filling in for Duncan Garner on The AM Show.