COVID-driven physical inactivity crisis hits school-age children

Active students have better grades, enhanced memory, lower absenteeism and better behaviour

COVID-driven physical inactivity crisis hits school-age childrenThe physical activity levels of our young people were already trending downward when COVID-19 hit. The pandemic made things worse. Kids around were stuck at home, forced to try to learn virtually. An online math class is one thing. A physical education class at home is nearly impossible. During the pandemic, physical education has been…

How racially-charged sports team names marginalize your neighbours

Cleveland MLB franchise sees the light and adopts a new name

How racially-charged sports team names marginalize your neighboursCleveland Guardians. Sure it sounds weird. Cleveland’s baseball team has been called the Indians for more than a century. But everyone will get used to it. Most importantly, it was the right thing to do. Yes, the name Indians is less egregious than the blatantly racist name Redskins that Washington’s National Football League team used…

Big-time U.S. college sports have nothing to do with education

Show me the money!

Big-time U.S. college sports have nothing to do with educationHere we go again. The University of Texas and University of Oklahoma are reportedly exploring the possibility of leaving the Big 12 Conference for the Southeastern Conference (SEC) in search of more money and exposure for their athletic programs. The American college sports landscape has changed rapidly in the last several months. The United States…

How one athlete’s courage has given the LGBTQ community new strength

National Football League player Carl Nassib has given the battle against homophobia in sports and society in general a huge boost

How one athlete’s courage has given the LGBTQ community new strengthLas Vegas Raiders’ defensive lineman Carl Nassib announced he was gay last week. He’s the first active National Football League player to do so. It was a landmark announcement that will help thousands of young LGBTQ athletes and non-athletes alike. It’s a milestone that has – and will continue to – garner a lot of…

Coaches at all levels treat fun as a negative. It’s not

Humanistic coaches focus on encouragement and positive motivation. They believe humans seek out fun and want to actualize themselves

Coaches at all levels treat fun as a negative. It’s not“Fun is good.” – Mike Veeck, creator of a variety of innovative and fun baseball promotions Unfortunately, the vast majority of coaches, from the youth level to the professional level, adopt a militaristic coaching style. They believe a taskmaster mentality is how you get the best from athletes. It’s not. “Nothing, according to the research,…

More of the smartest things ever said about sports – and life

Sport at its best is a co-operative activity. We compete with our opponents, not against them

More of the smartest things ever said about sports – and lifeI love to collect quotes on a wide variety of subjects but especially sports. I’ve shared some of my favourites in the past. However, there are so many great ones, I’ve decided to share a few more. We celebrated Jackie Robinson Day on April 15, so I’ll start with a quote from the man who…

Baseball all-star shift puts spotlight on Colorado’s exceptional voting laws

A win for the U.S. and its democracy?

Baseball all-star shift puts spotlight on Colorado’s exceptional voting lawsMajor League Baseball’s decision to move the all-star game out of Georgia and to Colorado will guarantee that state voting laws will be a big story in the days surrounding the game. Colorado’s voting system will undoubtedly get a lot of attention, especially as the July 13 game gets closer. That’s good news, whatever your…

How do we fairly welcome trans athletes to playing fields?

The general approach should be to have experts in each sport come together and decide on the specific rules for allowing fair competition

How do we fairly welcome trans athletes to playing fields?Most of the sports issues I write about are pretty straightforward – at least in my mind. The solutions seem pretty clear. Do big-time college athletes deserve a bigger slice of the billions being made from their efforts? Undoubtedly. In an era in which childhood obesity is at epidemic levels, and teenage anxiety, depression and…

Major League Baseball has a sexual harassment problem

What constitutes manhood in sports culture is archaic. As if the sports world has been frozen in time – Neanderthal time

Major League Baseball has a sexual harassment problemWhat former New York Mets general manager Jared Porter did to a female reporter is despicable. He certainly deserved to be fired after admitting to sending dozens of explicit text messages and photos to the reporter in 2016. The sad part is almost everyone inside baseball – most notably women in baseball – know this…

Weighing the risks of youth sports in a pandemic

Weighing the risks of youth sports in a pandemicWe’re in the midst of both a COVID-19 pandemic and a childhood physical inactivity epidemic. That creates a dilemma for young athletes and their parents: Is the risk of playing organized sports during the pandemic greater than the risk of the negative physical and mental impacts of not playing? Young people need to move their…

If a team name is offensive, change it without delay

Why is the Cleveland baseball team waiting until 2022 to make the change? Let the healing begin now

If a team name is offensive, change it without delayFinally, Cleveland’s Major League Baseball (MLB) team says it plans to replace its racist Indians nickname. That’s great news. The Indigenous shouldn’t be used as nicknames and mascots for sports teams in the same way lions, bears and other animals are. Period. But why is the Cleveland organization waiting until 2022 to make the change?…

The grand hypocrisy of big-time U.S. college sports

The policy appears to be ‘the show must go on,’ no matter what the health consequences are

The grand hypocrisy of big-time U.S. college sportsU.S. college basketball’s March Madness is one of my favourite sporting events of the year. The upsets are fun. The one-loss-and-you’re-gone format of the national championship tournament is much more exciting than the long playoff season the National Basketball Association gives us. The bands. The crazy student sections. Switching back and forth between tournament games…

Tackling mental health issues in athletes

Mental health challenges also negatively impact sports performance

Tackling mental health issues in athletesAnxiety and depression are common mental health issues among college students. According to Daniel Eisenberg, an associate professor at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, one in three American college students experience significant symptoms of depression, anxiety or other mental health conditions. College athletes certainly aren’t immune to these mental health challenges. In…

Head injuries and football go hand in hand

Head injuries and football go hand in handAccording to a study from researchers at the Boston University CTE Center, each year a person endures repetitive head collisions from playing football the risk of developing degenerative brain disease increases by 30 per cent. In addition, for every 2.6 years of play, the risk of developing chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) doubles. This study quantifies…
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