The message that we're sending to our children is loud and clear: we want you to excel at sports, so you'd better do it. We want to see you become an athletic star, regardless of your interest (and often skill level). Until we let go of our collective dreams of athletic super-stardom, of touchdowns and home runs, we will continue to negatively affect our children's psyches.
What is it that makes some athletes persevere while others give up? What drives an athlete at all? It's of course impossible to know if an athlete will 'make it' until they actually do but, in my mind, the root of this perseverance is planted in four simple things: a love of the sport, the desire to improve, being satisfied with small, incremental improvements and patience. In a word -- grit.
In this day and age of gaming consoles and the rise in obesity, why not get off the couch and come out to your local field and have a game or two. Paintball offers all the thrills you are getting from your game consoles without the safety of your screen in the way and you get some cardio work out at the same time. There are lots of articles being written now about the health benefit of getting out and playing paintball. Your heart and lungs get a work out every time you step onto the field and realize as you raise your marker (correct term instead of paintball gun)...someone else is out there gunning for me and my friend those paintballs have a muzzle velocity of 300fps (feet per second).
Central to the departure of coach Mike Spracklen from Rowing Canada, it seems, was his style, methods and standards. By all accounts, it was not an entirely agreeable decision to let him go. What does it say about a system that caters to the chirpers and prodders who didn't achieve what they wanted, instead of propping up the ones who got the results?