Posts Tagged ‘Anisa Nakai’

Love What You Do and Feel That it Matters

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

Lynne Andrew is an inspiration and an example of how hard work, building connections and following your passion can lead to a life you love.  She followed her passion for basketball through many states and not so temperate climates to pursue her dreams. My favorite quote from Lynne is:

Love what you do and feel that it matters

She followed her love of basketball to a different country being awarded a scholarship in Devil’s Lake, North Dakota.  She was even able to travel to Germany to play basketball, not knowing the language did not stop her from following her passion!  After finishing her degree in Physical Education at Montana State University, she ventured back to Devil’s Lake, North Dakota to be an assistant coach wanting to teach her skills and pass it on to others.  She kept her goal of being head coach in mind as she took a position as second assistant coach to a Division I school in Utah and moved to Idaho State to complete a Master’s in Athletic Administration before moving to Fairbanks, Alaska to gain more experience.

Her goal had changed and she wanted to continue to gain more experience in the administrative area of athletics and found that she enjoyed the experience she was gaining in compliance.  She applied for a position as Head Coach for Fort Lewis College after spending 5 years in Alaska and has been an asset to the college ever since.  She wears many hats in her position including: coordinating sporting events, budgeting, mentoring “at risk” student-athletes and making sure the college is complying with the many rules for all sports.

What I have taken away from what she shared with us is that it is important to keep your goals in mind, do not be afraid to speak up, effectively learn how to manage your time, take time to build connections with people even if you are busy and put your heart into your work because no task is too mundane even if it is pulling out bleachers for an event.

I want to apply this to my life by not losing sight of my goal to teach yoga and eventually open a studio.  After interviewing the co-owners of YogaDurango this seemed like an insurmountable feat, but I think that if I put my heart into it, continue to build connections in yoga and take opportunities to learn even the mundane aspects of business it will be achievable.

Thank you Lynne for sharing your words of wisdom.

Car-pe Sta-diem

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

Sports and sporting events have been a part of human civilization from the very beginning. Sport core values lay in the need for survival of our species. However, now that humans have obviously ensured their stay on this planet, why do sports still encompass such a large part of society? Now, it is not being suggested that we should denounce sports and leave them in the pages of history, but do we really need to continue to allocate such a vast amount of our resources towards them? Sports stadiums may provide one of the best examples of how distorted our priorities as a society are. According to Aaron Gordon of the Pacific Standard,

“Over the past 20 years, 101 new sports facilities have been opened in the United States, “

He goes on by saying,

“The average public cost for a sports facility at the end of the 2000’s is 241 million.”

I’ll let you do the math, but this is an enormous  number. A monetary number that could go towards public schooling, infrastructure, medical advancement, or all three. The Constitution, referenced in chapter 17,  states that public sports organizations have to comply with several requirements in the management of their business activities. So why isn’t the public’s voice being heard? In the article, proof is shown that the people don’t always vote for increasing taxes to fund a new stadium, yet stadiums continue to be built using the peoples tax money.

“The problem becomes unsolvable when voters rarely get to actually vote on the issue and when they vote “no” the stadiums get built anyway.”

The first photo is a stadium for the Carolina Panthers that want $200 million in public funding to renovate their stadium and the second photo is in Chester, Pennsylvania which was referenced in the article.  The total cost of the stadium in Chester was $117 million and 97% of the funding is coming from the people who live there.

Bank of America Stadiumpennsylvania stadium


What’s Really Going On Under the Armor?

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

The sports organization, Under Armor, endorses professional athletes to wear and promote their products. These athletes often choose to tweet pictures of themselves wearing their companies product. This is a very smart and “seemingly” passive way to promote a business, however, sometimes it can cause obvious backlash.

In the case of Bryce Harper, the truth behind the importance and stringency of his endorsement with Under Armor became apparent, when he accidentally took a picture of himself wearing Nike shorts while undergoing physical rehabilitation.  Minutes after taking the picture, it was deleted and a new picture of him completely saturated in Under Armor apparel surfaced. His tweet was exactly the same as the deleted one, word for word, the only difference was the switch in clothing. This goes to show that athletes that are endorsed by a company are under large amounts of pressure to not only wear their product, but also not wear products from other companies.  The following link is the article in question:

Under Armor’s tactics for endorsing a professional athlete like Bryce Harper are to probably to appeal to the baseball following population demographic and to create exposure for the brand by using an athletic role model that embodies qualities that are important to the company.  According to an article, How to Choose the Right Athlete to Endorse Your Brand, this question is addressed in the following quote:

“Sports athletes and celebrities draw huge attention from corporate sponsors and  media as they appeal to many demographics. An athlete endorsing a product can  transform a brand…Initially the endorsement creates exposure for the brand.”

The article addresses what companies like Under Armor hope to achieve by endorsing athletes and it looks something like this:

“recognition, consideration, favorability, loyalty and ultimately to increased sales of a product.”

The article that addresses finding the right athlete to endorse your brand can be reached in the link below:

Other ways that Under Armor could use nontraditional forms of communication to achieve their purposes would be through facebook or blogs posted by athletes who endorse their products with keyword hashtags, for example, #baseball and #underarmor.  Under Armor may find other avenues to create brand exposure without blunders from endorsed athletes by exploring new modes of communication.



SOCHI…setting the standards high for environmental impact

Wednesday, November 6th, 2013

Sochi has a chance at creating one of the most sustainable Olympic Events in history and I think it is achievable.  If Sochi is able to achieve the amazing feat of creating sustainable Olympic and Paralympic games it may just show the rest of the world that sustainability is possible, especially because these games draw huge crowds of people from all over the world.  The six main areas that Sochi has decided to focus their efforts of sustainability are: Healthy Living, Barrier-free World, Modern technologies, In Harmony with nature, Economic prosperity and Culture and national values.  The area that concerns me most is Harmony with Nature because the Olympic games can cause a strain on many environmental factors, like affecting migration patterns of local wildlife, wasteful water usage by participants and spectators and disruption of local vegetation with heavy traffic from the brief but substantial rise in population.  In a effort to reduce these factors the Sochi committee is working with partners, such as, Coca Cola, Dow and Panasonic to take a proactive approach on environmental issues for the future 2014 games.  The following statement reflects one of the missions of Sochi 2014:

“Mission of the Winter Games of 2014 is to introduce in Sochi a new vision of sustainable development in harmony with nature that will not only spare Sochi environment of harmful impact but also will be instrumental in resolving ecological challenges that have accumulated over many years.”

This statement shows that Sochi is taking the opportunity to not only achieve an amazing ideal, but to rectify some of the pre-existing problems they have found.  The Sochi committee has come up with many great ideas to reduce impact on environment and plans for the time period after the games are over to restore conditions.  This is a statement about the post-games period from the Sochi committee:

“following transformation of Olympic venues disturbed natural properties and complexes shall be rehabilitated, temporary structures dismantled, grass cover restored; technological systems at sports venues and engineering systems shall be adjusted to uninterrupted and efficient performance; all materials and equipments that are not to be used further shall be removed from the Games delivery territory Sochi 2014 development is being exercised simultaneously with the development of Sochi natural protected areas.”

The four key elements that the Sochi committee is addressing, so that the games are in harmony with nature are: zero waste, games with minimal impact on climate, games in harmony with nature and enlightened games.  The zero waste goal is going to be implemented with an infrastructure strategy that targets the waste management currently in place and in place of a rubbish incinerating plant Russia is piloting a new waste-sorting plant.  The committee has also addressed issues that affect pollution of the sea due by building a bypass road with systems designed to collect and clean surface debris.  The zero waste infrastructure is thorough and it is amazing to see a Russia take this opportunity to make changes for a more sustainable future, so the impact is not just temporary for the purpose of the 2014 games.  Under the key element of games with minimal impact on the climate, the Sochi committee has designed action plans to reduce the numbers of air pollution sources as well as the air pollutants emitted and a program to neutralize the balance of carbon dioxide emissions.  The enlightened games element addresses dissemination of knowledge about environmental awareness and responsible behavior.  The following youtube video is from Dow, which is one of the partners working with Sochi to create this sustainable dream:



Single Mother’s Privileges

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Single mother’s like Sondra take on considerably more than most parents in partnerships.  This scenario reflects what the recreation center deems as privilege and in this case it is that they hold true to their participation fees.  Is sport participation a right or a privilege? Sondra is a single mother who is raising four children and while she wants to provide the opportunity of sports participation for two of her children is not able to afford the $125 participation fee.  She has sought financial assistance through the recreation center, but budget cuts have not allowed them to offer this to her.  Financial assistance from the recreation center seems to be the only alternative that Sondra has looked into and they told her,

“sport participation is a privilege, not a right…the recreation center was therefore under no obligation to provide financial support.”

It seems that it sports participation is only a privilege for people who are able to afford the sum of money for participation and because of this there reflects socio-economic discrimination in this suburban Midwestern area of the United Sates. Some alternatives that have not been addressed are to seek other baseball leagues within the area to see if any other institutions would help her children to be allowed to participate in sports for a more affordable fee and if she wanted to continue to stay at the recreation center maybe she could see if there was a way she could make payments instead of paying the full sum at once.  If Sondra was only able to afford the participation fee for one child then she could also do this as well.  It seems that Sondra has chosen the recreation center for some reason as well as trying to provide new opportunities for two of her four children, so asking the staff or managers at that facility if she could make payments over the duration of the baseball season seems like a possibility.  If she was able to explain her situation they may have a payment plan available so that her children would still be able to participate and the facility would still be paid the amount of money they have asked for.  This approach which is a mix between the common good and utilitarian approaches seems most appropriate of for the situation.  If the facility is willing to work with Sondra in her financial situation they would be gaining a loyal costumer who has two other children that she would want to provide opportunities for in the future.  She would also be happy that she was able to provide this opportunity for children and the two children who were able to participate would benefit by learning life skills such as, building self-esteem, team work, communication with new and different people, how to deal with challenges all while having fun and feeling that they belong to something.  I think this alternative would provide the most positive outcome for all people involved in this situation.

Mixed Messages…Student-Athlete or Just Athlete?

Thursday, October 24th, 2013

What kind of messages are we sending to student-athletes if we set low standards for GPA.  Should they also expect that the bar be lowered for them as adults after playing sports in school?  How can we expect so little of high school athletes, but once they turn 18 we have unrealistic professional expectations of them?  Lowering GPA requirements for student-athletes ultimately hurts our future generation of leaders and work force.  It changes the role of the student-athlete to just an athlete.

 According to Ted Biondo (ESPN video clip: OTL: Lowering GPA Standards), “If that’s the only thing keeping them in school, how does that affect the other kids.”

Alex trautmann is a baseball player with a 3.2 GPA and he has an interesting point of view on lowering GPA for student-athletes.

Alex Trautmann makes a compelling statement when he says, “School is not important, learning is not important.”

Another conscientious  student from the ESPN video clip, Aida Cornier, has tutored many student-athletes and has seen a change in attitudes from when GPA standards were higher at her school to lower standards now in effect.  She mentions that a 2.5 GPA motivated the student-athletes she tutored to work harder and now many have the impression that they can slack off with the lower standards.  In light of what Aida says, we have to wonder if lowering the bar for these students to play sports will help them to graduate from their institutions or help them achieve their future goals in life.  Where did the role of high schools change from educating our youth to shifting the focus onto sports?