For media inquiries, please contact, Pamela D'souza.
- Pamela dot Dsouza at royalroads.ca
Walinga on line between coaching and bullying athletes
In her interview with the Times Colonist’s Charla Huber, Royal Roads Prof. Jennifer Walinga says that it “It can’t only be about a gold medal" when it comes to high performance coaching.
Here is an excerpt:
Walinga mentioned a survey Athletes Canada conducted where 20 per cent of athletes reported experiencing sexual abuse in sport and a whopping 65 per cent of athletes reported psychological abuse. Abuse can never be justified, and with more than half of our national athletes being mentally abused, there is clearly a problem.
‘Youth sports have a lot of abuse and it comes from coaches, parents and even other players,’ said Walinga. ‘Abuse affects an athlete’s confidence and sense of self. This can occur when a coach bullies players, doesn’t allow them to do things other players can or criticizes the player’s size and shape.’
Walinga believes there’s a better way to ensure coaches can be tough, but fair and respectful. She wants coaches of all levels to have mandatory mentors and sanctioned training that involves a values-based approach to sport. Walinga is working on a research project where she studies high-performance teams and interviews athletes and coaches to establish how a values-based approach to sport and coaching is being leveraged for success.
‘It can’t only be about a gold medal,’ Walinga said. ‘We’re owning the podium, but we can do that and still be safe and ethical.’
Read the full story in the Times Colonist.