Sport for Life is committed to ensuring Canadian athletes have world-class facilities to train and compete in. They need to be inclusive of people from all walks of life, as well as safe and welcoming. It’s not unusual for athletes to feel like their facility is a home away from home, so good programming should aim to foster this feeling through innovation and ensuring the kids are having fun.
A good place creates a good feeling
Synchronized swimmer Halle Pratt talks about the facility she grew up in, calling it a home. Sport for Life CEO Richard Way emphasizes the importance of safety in a good facility. That means the equipment is in good condition, and everything is well-lit, clean and well-maintained. From a social perspective, it should be an inclusive and welcoming place for everyone, including those with disabilities. Jadine Cleary of Synchro Canada and Olympian Thomas Jones speak to the importance of innovation, and not doing things the same way they’ve always been done.
Are we having fun yet?
It doesn’t matter at what level you’re playing, there has to be fun. Corey McNabb of Hockey Canada believes fun is a crucial part of the equation, whether you’re looking at kids, professionals, or seniors. According to Jadine Cleary of Synchro Canada, fun is an “important component of performance”, especially because some athletes will leave if they’re not enjoying themselves. Exercise physiologist Jodi Hawley agrees, saying “what is it that powers your kid is probably the most important question you can ask”.