The Man Who Moved a Mountain (literally)

In a society where we regularly debate whether the word “hero” is used too liberally to describe highly-paid sports stars, here’s a heart-warming story about a simple man who moved a mountain to help his community.

Concussion and junior sport

Here’s a great article I came across with some commonsense suggestions re concussion and junior sport.  Both my sons play rugby union and whilst they’re too young yet to have had serious hits to the head, it’s not that far away I reckon.  The size disparity amongst the boys is starting to show now.  The Pacific Islander boys especially are big, fast and skillful – wonderful athletes.  My son just clings on like a limpet and gets dragged the length of the field.  I sometimes think his days in this sport are numbered, despite his passion for the game.

The great oxymoron – football codes and itegrity

It always makes me laugh when some die-hard fans confuse their love of their favourite team or football code with the notion that integrity/decency is intrinsically part of that culture.  From my experience, I can safely say that rugby union makes a genuine attempt to align their culture with community expectations around common decency but when it comes to some of the other codes, to associate them with words like “integrity” is an oxymoron.  Or maybe even just remove the first three letters and see what’s left! No amount of school/hospital visits, anti-bullying programs and junior coaching clinics can hide the reality that these “businesses” deal only in one currency – winning at any cost.  Right or wrong is merely a matter of convenience.  Here’s an excellent piece by Patrick Smith in The Australian which speaks to my point exactly.

The need to educate our boys (from a victim’s perspective)

Here’s a great little article, written by a woman who suffered domestic violence and was continually preyed upon and not taken seriously by the entire system, including the legal system that was meant to protect her.  I especially liked her comment that “we need to be educating our teenagers, boys and girls, as to what constitutes a healthy relationship and what does not. They need to be able to spot the warning signs and know they can do something about it.”

It’s this message that’s at the core of my program called A Few Good Men.  We need to also role-model what “healthy” looks like too (instead of always focusing on the negatives) so that the right path is clearly illuminated.  It’s like lights on an airport runway – illuminating the correct approach is more important than having lights show where not to land the aircraft!


Our kids are safer when we take violence against women more seriously

Following my interview on 612ABC on Monday morning, (, there has been a lot said about the ongoing tragedy of violence against women.  There is credible evidence to suggest that 50-70% of men who commit acts of violence against women, also go on to hurt their children. Ignoring the first issue inevitably leads to a higher probability of more innocent people being harmed. Here is an excellent article that speaks to this very point.

The importance of sleep for teenagers

I’ve recently been talking to parents and coaches throughout Australia about the vital role that sleep plays in human development.  Forget all the performance enhancing drugs – sleep will probably aid performance more than all the fancy peptides, calves blood etc.  All these footy teams that are looking for 1% extra might be better off encouraging their athletes to get more sleep, instead of asking them to attend sponsor functions with booze, late nights (leading then to nightclubs, fights, social media gaffes).  Here’s an interesting article.

Since when did not saying “NO” mean “YES”?

This fascinating rape trial, playing out in the US State of Ohio at the moment, mirrors so much of what we talk to young athletes about in our lifeskills classes.  At least in America, it seems like being a professional athlete doesn’t buy you immunity from the law.  Here’s a great (sad) piece written by Tracey Spicer. Let’s hope we can all do our bit to make sure this never happens (again) here in Australia, amongst our sportsmen.

50 shades of grey when it comes to elite athletes and sexual assault

Anyone who has attended my workshops will remember the conversations we’ve had about elite athletes (mainly the boys) and how the lines of consent get blurred when there’s alcohol involved (on both sides).  This current story from the USA is a salutary lesson in the old adage… if there’s alcohol involved, don’t take the chance.  I know it sounds a bit old-fashioned but the ramifications could be time spent in jail.  And consent is rarely asked for when you cop it in that environment!!!

Finally, someone has come out and said it!

Just found this article today!  Wonderful.  I’ve been saying this for years now but finally a real journo with credibility has had the guts to say it out loud.  It might touch a raw nerve or two but the truth has that effect!