The passing of basketball icon Kobe Bryant at the beginning of 2020 was devastating for many different sporting and cultural communities. However, the plethora of opportunities Bryant left his family, and the management of those entities by his estate, thereafter, shed light on a neglected area of branding research. How athletes are able to prepare their estates to continue to benefit from their name, image, and likeness, even after death, is a substantial topic in regard to the legacy that various athletes are able to establish. Through an analysis of various posthumous branding phenomena, as well as a comparison with other posthumous celebrity brands, this commentary discusses the current issues faced by athletes, such as ownership and protection. An understanding of current barriers to greater posthumous earnings will benefit how athletes and researchers alike construct and evaluate brands, respectively. Future research should address how prevalent forward thinking is to athletes’ brand building toward a successful postathletic career, as well as the current status of estate planning and brand communication by athletes and/or their brand managers.
Antonio S. Williams, Zack P. Pedersen, and Kelly J. Brummett
Laura Poos and Fraser Carson
Recent literature has noted the underrepresentation of women in high-performance (HP) coaching and the challenges faced when they do succeed in gaining entry to this male-dominated domain. Initiatives have been implemented in developed sporting nations to address this. However, less is known regarding the experience of women coaching at HP level in small, economically advanced countries and metropolises, where a number of additional sociocultural barriers exist. Underpinned by LaVoi and Dutove’s ecological model, six women currently coaching at HP level in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg were interviewed, reflecting on their experiences in their role. A social phenomenological analysis approach was taken, with a deductive thematic analysis identifying 32 raw data themes: five supports (e.g., passion for the job) and four barriers (e.g., personal sacrifices) were reported at individual level; five supports (e.g., family support) and three barriers (e.g., lack of federation support) identified at interpersonal level; three supports (e.g., open communication environment) and seven barriers (e.g., lack of entry opportunities) noted at organizational level; and two supports (e.g., increased acceptance by male athletes) and three barriers (e.g., hegemonic masculinity) described at societal level. Further challenges exist in Luxembourg due to coaching not being seen as a legitimate career pathway and an underlying cultural expectation for women to manage domestic duties. The structure of the coach education system in Luxembourg makes it possible to address these barriers and enable a more diverse workforce in leadership positions in HP sport. Doing so should create more opportunities and support for women in coaching.
Andrew Sortwell, Daniel A. Marinho, Jorge Knijnik, and Ricardo Ferraz
Physical education (PE) plays a central role in children’s and young people’s holistic development, enabling cognitive, psychomotor, and affective development while boosting healthy lifestyles and socialization. Children equipped with developed motor abilities, such as muscular strength and power, will be better prepared to learn motor performance skills and sustain the demands of learning and playing games and sports. A scientific literature search was conducted in January 2021 to identify all relevant controlled studies from January 2000 to 2021 on PE interventions and strategies based on resistance training to achieve PE outcomes. The review showed that exposure to resistance exercises in PE lessons might be beneficial for primary school students’ general physical fitness, motor performance skills proficiency, and learning diversified sport skills. Interventions that include muscular strength and power development can support adequate muscular fitness and motor performance skill proficiency to achieve primary school PE outcomes.
The concept of “muscular Judaism” coined by Max Nordau has been interpreted in different ways. For Nordau, the image of a Jew standing fit was a rebuttal to anti-Semites and the answer to Jews’ unmet aspirations for a national home. In practical terms, “muscular Judaism” translated into excellence in sport. As athletes, the Jews could make their mark and move from the fringes of society into the mainstream. This concept evolved over the years, reflecting changing times, shifts in global thinking and national needs. After the establishment of the state, Israeli society underwent a process of Americanization that was accompanied by a new understanding of muscular Judaism and body image. This article discusses three physical fitness trends that redefined the concept of muscular Judaism: gym training, bodybuilding, and catch wrestling. These were rooted in the American aesthetic ideal, a far cry from the ideology and collective socialist worldview prevalent in Israel.
Gregg Twietmeyer and Tyler G. Johnson
The modern sports world is currently obsessed with records, data, statistics, and/or the objective measurement of human performance. A primary message originating from this trend—manifesting in youth, club, interscholastic, intercollegiate, and professional sport—is that breaking records and improving one’s statistical output is the main objective of sport. In this article, we argue for why a predominant focus on records, stats, and winning is self-limiting and thereby misses the mark of what sport and sporting performance are. It is human beings who play sports rather than mere physical mechanical objects. Furthermore, we propose an arete-based philosophical perspective—taken directly from the ancient Greeks and particularly Aristotle—for how we ought to conceptualize and pursue sport. An arete-based philosophy captures the true essence of what sport is about by rooting it in what is “good and beautiful” (kalokagathia as the Greeks called it). Arete or “virtue” is, for Aristotle, about the cultivation of human excellence. Excellence, however, is not myopically reduced to “being the best,” “achieving fame or honor,” or “winning.” Instead, arete aims at cultivating the skills, both kinesthetic and moral, that lead to a good life. Elite performance, no matter how impressive, is never more than one small aspect of such a life. Character matters too, which means human excellence is never reducible to the measurable. After articulating this Aristotelian philosophy of sport, we then conclude the article by offering five recommendations for how teachers, coaches, and leaders of sport organizations can improve the culture of sport. Physical educators and coaches would be wise to take this Aristotelian conception of arete to heart.
Gretchen Paulson and Christy Greenleaf
This study explored the association between physical activity and the experience of embodiment among women aged 40 years and older. Women (n = 112; M age = 63.55, SD = 9.36) who reported engaging in physical activity at least twice per week completed an online survey including the Experiences of Embodiment Scale, Embodied Physical Activity Questionnaire, International Physical Activity Questionnaire, and an open-ended item. Multivariate analysis of covariance indicated significant differences in embodiment between different levels of activity, and follow-up univariate analyses revealed that high active women reported higher scores on two Experiences of Embodiment Scale subscales (positive body connection and agency and expression) than low active women. Significant differences were also seen in Embodied Physical Activity Questionnaire scores across groups, with higher active women reporting stronger experiences of embodiment during exercise. The findings suggest a positive relationship between physical activity and experiences of embodiment and highlight the need to further explore ways to cultivate these experiences.