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The Shoe Goes on the Other Foot -- For Real

So this is what it feels like. To be yelled at while playing. To be told you're not good enough to be on a team ... by someone who's not even playing herself and isn't an expert or a true, certified coach -- just another player who wants to play certain people for a specific end that benefits her ego, not anyone else's real development.

Youth athletes should feel empowered to say, "This coach does not have MY best interests at heart and I need to find that team myself." It truly does not matter if the athlete has professional aspirations or not, the issue is live game or match experience for personal improvement.

Elaine Raakman (Justplay Founder): Abusive Youth Sports Coaches Should Not Be Cultural Norm

Being the mother of an athlete is a challenging yet rewarding role. So momsTEAM has designated May as Sports Moms Month and is celebrating by asking some of our favorite sports moms to share their wisdom by responding to a series of questions.

So far this month we have heard from a fascinating range of sports moms, from a mom of an Olympic athlete to moms who were themselves Olympic athletes, from a mom of two former minor league baseball players to a Minnesota hockey mom and author.

Today, we hear from Canadian youth sports reform advocate and sports mom, Elaine Raakman:

The Canadian founder and developer of Justplay, a program which monitors the behavior of coaches, spectators and players and generates reports which youth sport administrators can use to make data-driven staffing and policy decisions, says if she could change one thing about the culture of youth sport, it would be the acceptance of abuse by adults in general and coaches in particular as the cultural norm.
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