the earlier part of my childhood, being a female athlete wasn’t something I had
on my mind or even cared about. I spent most of my days riding my bike, running
freely in the grass and climbing trees.
Sometimes I would go on adventures with
my dad and younger brother in the woods, or go on walks in the neighbourhood
with my mom. I just enjoyed having fun and being outside, but I wasn’t really
thinking about athleticism, fitness or training. Being a goofy kid was just
fine by me.
2 was when I started understanding what being a female athlete was all about
and the differences between boys and girls natural athletic abilities. I had finally
befriended a group of guys to play with during recess (yay friends!) and was
stoked to just, well, play. The only real thing we did was play tag, but man,
it was intense! My guy friends decided to make it a spectacle and so every
lunch hour a group of them would line up on this little bridge by the
playground and start challenging each other to races up and down this pathway
that was probably 50 metres (so 100m if you went both ways).
first it was so exciting watching them all run full speed down the path. I
would always cheer them all on and yell and scream like a wild child. However,
I soon became bored from watching and I desperately wanted to join in on the
fun! I remember when I first asked if I could race, the guys all seemed very
skeptical. I mean, what girl would want to race a guy right? This one did.
Anyways, I finally got my shot and when they yelled “go”, I was ready. I burst
away from the bridge, full steam ahead, like someone had lit my butt on fire. I
was flying down the path. I could feel myself breathing faster and faster and
adrenaline was surging through my tiny body frame. What was even more spectacular
was that I was winning! I remember looking back as I crossed the finish line
first and realized I had just beaten a guy. I was grinning from ear to ear.
That day marked a very important day in my life. That was the day that I
realized, I could hold my own with the opposite sex.
went on to win many more lunch time races and in the end was undefeated on the
playground. It really helped me build some confidence in myself as I was really
shy beforehand and now I even had won the respect of most of the guys in my
elementary class. I carried that positive energy forward and made a commitment
to always be the quickest of the girls and to keep up (or beat) the boys. I
became VERY competitive and this is where my days of wearing frilly clothes and
dresses disappeared and instead I rocked those coveralls like any proud tomboy
chick would. It became a game; to be the best. If we were having relay races in
gym class, I had to be first. If we were climbing ropes in gym class, I had to
be first. If we were changing in the locker room, I had to finish first. If we
were running laps around the school at lunch time, I wanted to run the most. I
wanted everyone to know, but mostly the guys, that I meant serious business.
Yes, I was a scrawny little girl on the outside, but I was a force to be
reckoned with if someone tried to tease me.
carried this mindset with me right through junior high and high school. It was
a bit harder now as puberty began to set in and the guys were getting bigger
and stronger. Some of them began to surpass me in certain areas, but I always
tried to keep up and be a competitor. If I couldn’t beat them, I at least
wanted their respect. However, I still had high expectations to be one of the
best female athletes and so I began training 5-6 days a week. I began to notice
that I was putting on some muscle which was a nice change. I was getting
stronger and this meant that I could keep up with both sexes. If there was a
pick-up game of basketball going on in the gym, I could join in and the team
wouldn’t be “at a disadvantage”…that was always the goal, not to be looked at
as a nuisance, but to be looked at as a threat.
the most part, I am very happy with who I am today as a female athlete.
Obviously, there comes a point when I had to realize that genetics plays a bit
of a role in my ability versus my male counterpart and so I had to settle with
not necessarily being the best, but being respectable. However, this also
presents a problem, because as females, we shouldn’t have to “impress” anyone,
especially not males when it comes to our natural athletic ability. When I’m in
the gym doing squats, I sometimes see other men glancing at the weight I have
up on the bar and looking slightly puzzled, as if they are questioning my
ability to perform the action. When I successfully complete the set and re-rack
the bar, it feels amazing. But even if they weren’t there to witness me do
that, it would still feel amazing.
main point is simply this; I won’t judge you, so why bother judging me? I mean,
we’re all athletes, of various ages and abilities; we should respect one
another for reaching new accomplishments and for taking the initiative to
better our health. We don’t need to put one another down; we need to build each
other up. When I workout now, I always carry respect with me, whether it’s a
smile, a nod or a high-five, it’s important to pass along positive vibes and
not negative ones. Women have come a long way in sport and I think that’s
something that should be recognized. In the end, all I want as a female is
respect, from everyone.
It is always important for a coach to come to the diamond ahead of time and prepared. By extension, it is also important for the players to have an idea what the coach expects out of them each and every game. I have embedded a basic game plan below that goes through basic pre-game prep (e.g. dynamic stretching), concepts to help guide you throughout the game (e.g. positive encouragement and feedback), and finally the post-game which includes a debrief and cool down.
Guest blogger: Lena
Boyd- Head of TDC’s Photography Team
The Dream Catchers are proud to bring you ‘Citizen of the Capital,’ an on-going
project geared to get the Ottawa community more engaged with one another. Our goal with this new segment is emphasize
that everyone contributes in their own way to turn a city into a community. Whether it is your local barista, mail man,
colleague or a new face, our aim is to document and capture what Ottawa has to
offer through the story of our citizens.
Right from the beginning we saw the positive impact that it had, as we
experienced firsthand what it was like to become more involved and a part of our
community through this project. As the
Dream Catchers started to grow and gain momentum, so did our Citizen of the
Capital segment. Originally it was done
by each executive member of TDC but now we are beyond excited to announce that
we have a photography team of 10+ members.
Here are a few examples of profiles we have done!
We asked: “What contributes to a strong and successful community?”
“I think that respect and integrity are key.
But respect among the people of different cultures and communities
contributes towards a successful community.
asked: “Tell us about a time when someone has done something for you that you
feel you can never repay them for.”
“I want to say thank-you to my dad and my mum for teaching me how to be so
polite, always saying please and thank-you.
That has always taken me far in life, just small things. Everyone should do the same and I won’t be
able to repay my parents for that but hopefully I can pay it forward with other
In this day and age, as young adults, TDC members are aware of what technology
can do not only for us but to us. With
smart phones and tablets many of us are plugged into this online world
24/7. We have the ability to connect to
anyone at anytime and as this may open doors for new possibilities, if not used
correctly, it immediately closes the doors to community right in front of us.
Through this project TDC encourages you to unplug
and to use that time to get more involved in your community.
“How to Build Community,” by
IDEAS Get to know your neighbours Greet
your library Organize
a block party
Leave your house Sit
on your stoop Check
out Ottawa’s events pages to learn more about different events going on in the
head of the photography team, my job is to oversee the profiles for Citizen of
the Capital. TDC’s photography team of
10+ photographers hit the streets of Ottawa, Monday- Friday to have consistent
profiles up on our website. So, get out
there and get involved. Check out our
website to see previous Citizen of the Capital posts and keep an eye out for
future ones to come. Who knows, we may
be sharing your story next!
The following is a media release issued by Softball Canada.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 21st, 2014
Teams announced for 2014 ISF Junior Men’s World Championship
(Whitehorse, YT) – Five continents will be represented at the 2014 ISF Junior Men’s World Softball Championship in Whitehorse.
The championship will be held July 11 to 20 at the Pepsi Softball Centre, and on Thursday the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) revealed the eleven teams that will take part.
Asia, Europe, North America, South America, and Oceania all have teams participating. Argentina heads to Whitehorse as the defending champions, after winning South America's historic first-ever softball world championship at the event in 2012. They’ll be joined by host Canada, Mexico, United States and Venezuela, as representatives of the Americas.
Japan, the 2012 silver medalist, and Singapore will be in Whitehorse on behalf of Asia. Europe will be represented at the world championship by the Czech Republic and Denmark. Oceania will be represented by the 2012 bronze medalist Australia, as well as New Zealand.
"The Local Organizing Committee in Whitehorse has tremendous experience in both hosting and building a sustainable legacy for the local community through the delivery of excellent Softball World Championships, and I am confident the 2014 U-19 Junior Men's Softball World Championship will be another exciting and well-organized world stage for these dedicated young athletes to shine and proudly represent these eleven National Teams -- and their continents," said WBSC co-President, Don Porter.
Whitehorse previously hosted the 2008 Junior Men’s World Championship and 2012 Women’s World Championship.
“With just over 100 days to go until the action starts at the ballpark, it’s great to have the participating teams confirmed,” said George Arcand, Chair of the 2014 Organizing Committee. “I know the community will embrace all of these competitors and show them true northern hospitality. The countdown is on!”