Updating Policy Within Youth Sport Organizations Through Problem-Based Learning
Managing Conflict and Resistance to Change in a Minor Hockey System
Daniel Wigfield and Ryan Snelgrove
In March 2017, responding to a pressure to improve athlete development and enjoyment, Hockey Canada moved to change how youth are introduced to hockey by mandating the implementation of a cross-ice development program for its entry-level participants. The mandate of cross-ice programming was to ensure that all 75,000 entry-level participants received increased touches of the puck on an appropriately sized playing surface; thus, heightening their spatial awareness and foundational skills necessary to enjoyably move forward in hockey. As is common for many sport organizations, the proposed programming changes were met with resistance by some stakeholders. Surprisingly, the resistance to the programming changes evolved into a much-publicized intergroup conflict within Hockey Canada’s largest market. The dispute could not be resolved in time for the beginning of the 2017–2018 season. As a result, the defiant local leagues were granted a one-year reprieve from implementing cross-ice programming. With only a one-year reprieve granted, Hockey Canada must now determine the appropriate steps to fully implement their desired programming change and ensure that resistance-based conflicts are limited in the future.
To Grow or Not to Grow: Strategy Development at PGC Basketball
Daniel Wigfield, Ryan Snelgrove, Luke R. Potwarka, Katie Misener, and Laura Wood
Mano Watsa, President of Point Guard College (PGC) Basketball, is contemplating the next direction to take his organization. His co-owner, Nicole, is adamant that the next five years should be focused on growing PGC Basketball. Like Nicole, Mano would love to see PGC Basketball continue to grow; however, he is skeptical about focusing on growth when the organization is facing some significant challenges. Specifically, PGC Basketball is faced with a low athlete annual retention rate (i.e., 20%) and camps in some regions operating below 70% capacity. In addition, Mano recognizes that PGC Basketball has issues achieving consistency within their operations to ensure quality control, promoting their summer camps within all the markets they serve, as well as attracting and retaining top talent to work as camp instructors. Mano must determine the best strategy to implement for PGC Basketball to continue its success over the next five years.
Hockey Is Not for Everyone, But It Could Be
Victoria Kabetu, Ryan Snelgrove, Kimberly J. Lopez, and Daniel Wigfield
Steve Kroger, president and COO of Hockey Canada, is contemplating how to attract and retain more young people who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color in minor hockey (ages 4–18 years). Hockey Canada the governing association for amateur hockey in the country has created programs that make the sport accessible for more people to try, yet Steve recognizes there is still a lot of work that needs to be done to increase participation rates among Black, Indigenous, and People of Color athletes. Drawing on a policy paper for anti-racism in Canadian hockey, Steve tasks his team with developing strategies aimed at making the sport more inclusive and boosting participation.