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Gretchen Kerr, Erin Willson, and Ashley Stirling

This study sought to explore the long-term effects of emotionally abusive coaching on female athletes. Although the long-term effects of childhood emotional abuse are well-documented in the child abuse literature, this question has not been explored empirically in the domain of sport, an environment in which emotionally abusive coaching practices are known to be common. In various prevalence studies of athlete maltreatment in sport internationally, emotional abuse is the most frequently experienced form and yet the long-term implications of these experiences are not well-understood. This study involved interviews of eight retired, elite, female Canadian National Team members. The findings revealed that athletes reportedly experienced different effects depending on whether they were in their competitive careers, in the retirement transition, or in post-transition life. All of the athletes required professional psychological assistance to help them recover from their emotionally abusive experiences; for some, this process continued for six years post-retirement. The effects described by the athletes resembled the symptoms associated with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder suggesting an important line of future research. Until coaching practices become abuse-free, these findings also indicate a clear need for the provision of psychological supports and resources for athletes during and post-athletic career.

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Nicola Brown, Jacky Forsyth, Rachael Bullingham, and Claire-Marie Roberts

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Nicole Johnson, Katie Hanna, Julie Novak, and Angelo P. Giardino

While society at large recognizes the many benefits of sport, it is important to also recognize and prevent factors that can lead to an abusive environment. This paper seeks to combine the current research on abuse in the sport environment with the work of the U.S. Center for SafeSport. The inclusion of risk factors unique to sport and evidence-informed practices provides framing for the scope and response to sexual abuse in sport organizations in the United States. The paper then explores the creation and mission of the U.S. Center for SafeSport, including the role of education in prevention and of policy, procedures, audit, and compliance as important aspects of a comprehensive safeguarding strategy. This paper provides preliminary data on the reach of the Center, established in 2017. This data captures the scope of education and training and the increase in reports to the Center from within the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement.

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Lori A. Gano-Overway

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Leslee A. Fisher

The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how case study methodology, an advocacy practice and policy model (APPM), and new directions in feminist theory can be utilized to educate coaches about sexual misconduct. Case studies are useful for both research and teaching purposes because they provide a potential framework for analyses of “real-world” problems. The APPM provides guidance on moving from analysis to action; in particular, advocacy is about education, negotiation, and persuasion. Feminist theorists push us to consider how the embodied experiences of female athletes and feminine subjectivities can unsettle and disrupt normative assumptions about the way that sport should be conducted. The case of Larry Nassar is utilized because of the amount of reporting available to analyze; this includes female athlete survivor voices. Having coaches wrestle with such questions as (a) Do I know the definitions of sexual misconduct? (b) Do I understand the warning signs a female athlete might be displaying if she is being abused by significant other in sport? (c) When do I have to report abuse to authorities? and (d) Do I know how to intervene on the athlete’s behalf? is important if we are to increase the likelihood of creating systemic change.

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Brian P. McCullough, Madeleine Orr, and Timothy Kellison

The relationship between sport and the natural environment is bidirectional and critical to the production of sport products, events, and experiences. Researchers have studied sport and the natural environment within the various subdisciplines of sport management. However, given the changing climate and mounting public concern for the environment, there is pressure to reconsider the relevance and significance of the natural environment, which is taken for granted in managerial contexts. Reflecting the importance of the natural environment, the robustness of the current literature, and the potential for the future, we propose a new subdiscipline of sport management called sport ecology. Thus, we proposed, in this paper, a definition for sport ecology, (re)introduced key concepts related to this subdiscipline (e.g., sustainability, green), and highlighted the leading research that serves as the foundation for sport ecology. We concluded with a discussion on the ways sport ecology can inform—and be informed by—other subdisciplines of sport management.

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Bradley D. Hatfield, Calvin M. Lu, and Jo B. Zimmerman

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Colin J. Lewis, Simon J. Roberts, Hazel Andrews, and Rebecca Sawiuk

Creative nonfiction writing is the literary technique employed in this article to explore insights and assist our understanding of an “alleged” sexual assault in a sport coach education environment. Creative nonfiction employs various narrative tools—characters, setting, figurative language, sequences of events, plot, sub-plot, and dialogue—designed to render the sensitive and controversial elements of sexual assault significant. Readers are, therefore, invited to engage with Stacey’s Story and reflect on the actions of both the perpetrator(s) and the victim. While there are risks associated with the sharing of stories, especially those which are considered dangerous, it is envisaged that Stacey’s Story will be viewed as an opportunity to develop more critical responses and advance our understanding of gender-based violence in sport.