It is perhaps time to consider public health discourse on whether or not any putative benefits from participation in organized sports are largely cancelled out by the ensuing time pressure that not only seriously cuts into time for healthy eating but also sleep and other activities that should be part of an overall healthy lifestyle.
In a top NHL hockey market, there is nothing a Vancouver Canucks player or coach does on or off the ice that goes unnoticed by the city's sports media. During the recent off-season, Vancouver headlines focused on the new "man in charge", coach John Tortorella, a man known for his impatient and often volatile relationship with sports media. From screaming and swearing at reporters to his aggressive approach in post game media scrums, Tortorella has earned a reputation with those in the press box. So how has the NHL coach handled the tenacious Vancouver sports media so far?
When I was a teenager, I golfed. Once. It did not end well. Or start well for that matter. Suffice to say, my game failed to ascend to the dizzy heights of my expectations. Fast forward a century or so, to about 13 years ago when I took up golf once again, and I've discovered something amazing: how to have fun while golfing. Gather around and I'll share my secrets.
I want to change sport in this country to make it more accessible to our kids. I see too many Canadian kids not able to participate in sport; not afforded the chance to be a part of a team, be active or learn new skills. One of the biggest barriers is due to the rising costs of participating in sport.
The trend towards kids having rigorous schedules is a relatively new phenomenon. Perhaps a result of the pervasive guilt that so many of us share because of our need to work longer hours, we've put our kids in as many lessons as possible, some for practical reasons (after-school lessons and sports practice keeps our kids busy until we can leave work and pick them up) and some...well...not so much.
If we want our own children to learn to be courageous defenders of rights, we must first engage them in thinking critically about those rights. While adults may feel uncomfortable talking to children about the place of religion in society, we can still teach our children that people whose beliefs and practices differ from their own are deserving of respect and understanding.
For the past two years I've been actively recapping Drafted, a reality show put on by The Score and Gillette to find Canada's next sports broadcaster. I usually hate reality shows but Drafted really resonants with me because (A) it's a show about people pursuing their lifelong dream of talking about sports for a living and (B) what's more fun than watching emotional breakdowns when they fail at it?
We get it, hockey people (myself included). We know you like to act tough. But, please, please, please... Everybody in the NHL, for the love of whatever imaginary friend in the sky you believe in WEAR A VISOR! Fact is, visors don't save you from everything. They're not supposed to. But, they can still save your career. They can save you from something far worse.
As the "tough on crime" Administration continues attacks on criminals -- both real and imagined -- it behooves a responsible government to include crime prevention in the equation even as Harper expands Canadian prisons. Sports build the lifelong skills that Canadians of all origins value: character, teamwork, discipline, perseverance.