Sports chase numbers. Sports gather numbers. They report numbers. If you can count them they can play. It’s a serious game because it connects to market share that connects to funding. Knowing what is going on is a good thing and sports are better at maintaining databases than ever before. The first few paragraphs of the annual report of most major Australian sports boast participation numbers are increasing while in the later chapters all the indicators of a healthy sport ec
I am in sitting under a mango tree in Munda in the western province of the Solomon Islands, exchanging banter and observations with a group of teenage girls as they pull on their shoes and adjust their shin pads. The coach blows a whistle in the distance and within seconds the group is on the field, contracting and expanding again to run through kaleidoscopic drills. Three girls are left sitting under the tree and when I ask them why, they explain they each have their period.
If you had 20 million dollars to give to an organisation to use sport to change the world whose door would you knock on first? Sport organisations convene peers around compelling activities and create a supportive, safe space to challenge norms and stereotypes. It gives access to mentors who show people what is possible and can guide others through difficult life stages. It gets the attention of the community and offers high profile major events to which communication and fun
Just about every kid I knew growing up was sent along to Saturday netball and soccer games. Sometimes a club team lead to a representative team and that might lead to being made captain of the sport back at school. Perhaps that looked good in the resume and made some difference when it came to applying for a Saturday morning job. Maybe, when it came time to sorting through a pile of applications from teenagers who were otherwise indistinguishable, college administrators thoug
If sport is going to be relevant it must either align with something a new market values or have so much money behind it that it becomes a Jetson-like bubble that hovers over the realities a new market endures. It is tricky to make sport relevant in our own culture. It is trickier to make sport relevant in new cultures where sport is not an intergenerational experience handed down from parent to child and moulded over the years to take the shape of the things our culture care