Posts Tagged ‘Lance Armstrong’

Lance Armstrong- ISPA Athlete of the Decade Award

Monday, April 26th, 2010

Athlete of the Decade

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SPORTS PROFESSIONALS ~ ISPA

The Largest Accreditation Body Credentialing Sports Professionals in all Fields

News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact:     Dr. John E. Mayer, President                                                                                                                                                             312-917-1240

JMayer2@aol.com



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Chicago, IL—Dec. 18, 2009—The International Sports Professionals Association (ISPA) announced today that it has named Lance Armstrong as its Athlete of the Decade. Although Armstrong would have been named regardless of Tiger Woods recent problems Woods recent problems pushed him out of consideration.

“It was a fairly close race prior to the revelations that arose about Mr. Woods, but Mr. Armstrong was still our organization’s pick. When the stories broke about Tiger Woods’ infidelity and now the suspicion of his use of performance enhancing drugs that didn’t even make it close. Lance Armstrong is our pick for athlete of the decade.” Said Justin Mayer, Executive Director of ISPA.

“Our international organization’s mission is to assist in the safe and healthy participation in sports at all levels by credentialing those professionals who service sports and athletes. To accomplish this, our professionals uphold the highest standards and adhere to a code of ethics. Tiger Woods’ behavior took him out of the running for Athlete of the Decade.” Added Dr. John Mayer, President of ISPA.

The International Sports Professionals Association (ISPA) is the world’s largest credentialing service for professionals in sports. The ISPA sets standards for its membership by providing professional services to the sports world spanning children’s sports to professional athletes. The ISPA includes a wide variety of professional occupations from coaches, sport psychologists, physicians, accountants, agents, physical therapists, chiropractors, nutritionists, sport physiologists, trainers, and more. ISPA designates that member professionals adhere to a strict code of ethics and have met the highest standards in their fields to provide professional services to athletes and to sports. ISPA maintains a National Register of sports professionals; professionals listed in the register are the top professionals serving all domestic sports at all levels.  www.TheSportsProfessionals.com

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Tiger Woods Loses International Award

Friday, December 18th, 2009


News Release



Tiger Woods stripped of decade award

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Chicago, IL—Dec. 18, 2009—The International Sports Professionals Association (ISPA) announced today that it has named Lance Armstrong as its Athlete of the Decade. Although Armstrong would have been named regardless of Tiger Woods recent problems Woods recent problems pushed him out of consideration.

“It was a fairly close race prior to the revelations that arose about Mr. Woods, but Mr. Armstrong was still our organization’s pick. When the stories broke about Tiger Woods’ infidelity and now the suspicion of his use of performance enhancing drugs that didn’t even make it close. Lance Armstrong is our pick for athlete of the decade.” Said Justin Mayer, Executive Director of ISPA.

“Our international organization’s mission is to assist in the safe and healthy participation in sports at all levels by credentialing those professionals who service sports and athletes. To accomplish this, our professionals uphold the highest standards and adhere to a code of ethics. Tiger Woods’ behavior took him out of the running for Athlete of the Decade.” Added Dr. John Mayer, President of ISPA.

The International Sports Professionals Association (ISPA) is the world’s largest credentialing service for professionals in sports. The ISPA sets standards for its membership by providing professional services to the sports world spanning children’s sports to professional athletes. The ISPA includes a wide variety of professional occupations from coaches, sport psychologists, physicians, accountants, agents, physical therapists, chiropractors, nutritionists, sport physiologists, trainers, and more. ISPA designates that member professionals adhere to a strict code of ethics and have met the highest standards in their fields to provide professional services to athletes and to sports. ISPA maintains a National Register of sports professionals; professionals listed in the register are the top professionals serving all domestic sports at all levels.  www.TheSportsProfessionals.com

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It’s Good to be Old!

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

Back in July Lance Armstrong, then 37 years old, came in third at the Tour de France. The Tour de France is one on the toughest bike races in the world and boasts one of the most competitive fields in the sport of professional cycling. Armstrong was eleven years older than race winner Alberto Contador and thirteen years older than second place finisher Andy Schleck. Brett Favre, 40 year old quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings, finds himself ranked fourth (based purely on stats) among all NFL quarterbacks this season. Perhaps, even more important than numbers Favre has his team rolling along with a 7-1 record with their sights clearly set on the playoffs. The NFL is a tough league and even young players are chewed up and spit out by the dozen. Favre, who is 40 years old, excels even though he is many years older than the average NFL quarterback.

Science tells us that over time the body begins to slowly deteriorate. We lose muscle tone and our motor skills are not as sharp as they once were. How then can Armstrong and Favre compete at such a high level when they are many years older then their peers? Undoubtedly, both of these individuals are incredibly gifted athletes. One could make the argument that they are among the greatest to ever engage in their respective sports. Genetics play a large role, but I would like to think it is more than just winning the genetic lottery. I would like to think that it is heart that allows both of these athletes to continue to excel. Obviously, both athletes are still paid large sums of money; but they have already made their fortunes. I find it hard to believe that money is driving them to be so great at this stage of their lives. Ego? I am sure ego has something to do with their desire to compete, but is it enough to drive them to the pinnacle of their respective sports? No, I would like to believe that heart is what keeps them at the top. In an era when players only seem to rise to the occasion when their contracts are due it is refreshing to see two great athletes who have nothing to prove excel. What do I mean when I say “heart” keeps them at the top? Armstrong and Favre give their all to their sport. They play with a determination and passion rarely seen at any age. If only we could bottle their spirit and give it to all athletes. Armstrong and Favre show us that you are never too old to be great.

Justin Mayer, Executive Director-ISPA

Sportsmanship

Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

I Feel Badly

While taking a run this morning on the Chicago lakefront I did something I feel badly about. As I was well into my run my mouth developed a good deal of saliva as we men are often known to do. I looked behind me to my left and then to my right to see if another runner or cyclist was approaching me from behind because clearly there was no one approaching me. I prepared that mouthful of spittle, took a deep breath and off it went out of my mouth and on its way toward helping the lakefront grass to some nutrients. But, alas, from out of nowhere a cyclist going at an estimated speed approaching Contador and Armstrong dueling down a French mountain, came next to me at the moment of launch and my well intended lawn additive landed squarely in this cyclist’s face. After a string of choice words and a bit of a wobble on his expensive road bike he didn’t break pace and sped off.

My first reaction to this unfortunate incident was, “Oooops! I feel so bad, sorry good sir.” But, as I jogged on my merry way also not breaking stride from my blistering 10.0 mph pace I thought about how many times I had seen cyclists speed by runners, walkers, groups on this same path thinking they are re-creating a stage of the TOUR and ride up upon people without warning. I have seen cyclists run right into the backside of runners, I have seen runners change lanes suddenly and bikers swerve to avoid a crash only to be thrown violently from their bike. All of this that could have been avoided had the cyclist given the proper, “On your left” to warn the foot traffic on the path that they are approaching.

I do feel bad about what happened this morning, but cyclists please, give a warning as you approach foot traffic on the paths! At the very least you’ll be protected from the possible face full of spit.

Dr. John E. Mayer, President

International Association of Sports Professionals-ISPA

Bullying and Teasing in Sports

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

Sports and Bullying/Teasing

Dr. John E. Mayer

President-the International Sports Professionals Association-ISPA

In my career as a Clinical Psychologist I have established a national reputation for expertise in the problems of the adolescent years. One of the issues that I am frequently called on to help with is teasing and bullying among young people.

The last decade has seen more and more research being reported on the specific problem of bullying and teasing. It is encouraging to see so much attention in this traditionally neglected area of aggressive social behavior.

The findings are disturbing. One of the most recent studies and one of the few longitudinal studies of this problem highlights an alarming number of adolescents who bully. (58.4%) This study appeared in the journal, Child Development,79, 325-338.

The US Secret Service reported in 2002 that 2/3 of all perpetrators of youth violent crimes were teased or bullied prior to the event. The National Threat Assessment Center found that the attackers in more than 66% of the 37 mass school shootings were persecuted or bullied by others and that revenge was the overriding motive of these school shootings.

In my own clinical work, as I am called into cases around the country that involve youth violence, I can say anecdotally that the vast majority, if not all, of these cases involve teasing and bullying either on the perpetrator’s side or on the victims’ side of the case.

Further, studies are showing that bullies are very likely to develop psychiatric and psychological problems in early adulthood. (Pediatrics, August, 2007) And the victims of bullying display a greater risk for psychosocial maladjustment as well as somatic complaints (e.g. Headaches, sleep problems, stomachaches) than other young people. (see: Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 34, 37-48. 2005.)

Bullying and Teasing are serious problems among youth.

The spread of this problem has resulted from decades of neglect on the part of adults who enable this behavior in both direct and indirect ways. In the scope of this article I won’t take the space to explain what the aim of the bully is, but suffice it to summarize that some form of power over another is the most common goal of the bully. Similarly, I will not detail here all the reasons behind why the bully does what they do, but again to succinctly sum it up: Bullying works for the bully. This behavior is repeated because the bully’s aims are accomplished. Sadly, we adults are often to blame for allowing bullying to work well.

Also sadly, SPORTS HAS BEEN A COMMON WAY THAT BULLYING HAS BEEN FOSTERED OVER THE YEARS.

Too often a youngster’s inappropriate aggressiveness against other peers is whisked under the carpet with adult epitaphs such as, “He’s going to be a great ball player.” Or “She’s just being one of the boys.” Unsportsmanlike conduct or bullying on the playing fields of sport is regaled as desirable behavior and often cheered. A not uncommon coaching style is to use negativism toward the player as a motivator. This is just another form of bullying in the disguise of an acceptable context, sports achievement. The problem here is that youngsters don’t have the experience or judgments necessary to discern appropriate, aggressive sport participation and inappropriate bullying of a weaker opponent. This is where coaching should mold the athlete, not model inappropriate behavior.

But, athletics and bullying/teasing do have gray areas for coaches, parents and professionals.

Is the Jericho Scott experience bullying? Is he a stronger, more advanced athlete preying on

weaker opponents? Are the batters he throws pitches at with the equivalent of 110 mph

victims? Is he being enabled by a coach who wants to win at all costs? These are questions that

the adults close to this situation must evaluate, control and not ignore.

Athletic and physical prodigies raise important questions for us to answer as professionals who

serve the world of sport. Should they be allowed to participate at the same level as

smaller, weaker peers? These are exactly the questions we should be ready to answer for the

sports world.

What if LeBron James, Lao Ming, Tiger Woods, Andy Riddick, Michael Phelps, Michael Jordan

Sheyl Swoopes, Jennie Finch, Candice Parker, Lance Armstrong, or any of these athletic

phenoms were to become restricted from playing the sports they loved and excelled at? Was their

passionate participation in their sport bullying others of such lesser athletic endowment? These

are evaluations to be made by the adults around them with objectivity and fairness. Professionals

serving sports need to be prepared to advise in these situations.

What about coaches who use abusive/bullying techniques themselves? This modeling is another

prime reason why bullying becomes widespread in youth. This Neanderthal approach is not only

ethically wrong; it is not effective with today’s young athlete. It persists and in some circles,

flourishes. We, ISPA professionals, have an obligation to intervene with these coaches.

Currently, ISPA is mounting a membership drive to increase the numbers of coaches who are

credentialed by ISPA. This is an attempt to make a difference in the standards of coaching.

Please help by encouraging coaches to apply for ISPA credentials. Also, if you have affiliation with a coaches group or association, please help us network with these groups toward ISPA accreditation. We can make a difference.

What Can We Do About Bullying and Teasing?

Speaking of making a difference, what are the best ways we can stop this bullying in our young

people?

When you see it happening, discipline those who bully. Do not allow it to take place under your

supervision. And, don’t model bullying behavior through your actions toward others. Modeling

is a powerful way bullying is spread. This is why we are so eager to get coaches credentialed.

What do you tell a child who is a victim of bullying? All of the research and experience with

kids suggest there are only three effective ways to deal with the bully. 1) Don’t react to it in any

way-not even a grimace or flinch. 2) Ignore the bully’s words and actions. 3) Let the adult in

charge know about what the bully is doing. Only these three methods work effectively and for the

long haul. Age old advice such as, “You go back there and push him harder.” Or “Let’s figure

out something to call them that will hurt their feelings even more.” None of these things work

because they reinforce precisely what the bully wants, that is, to get a reaction out of the victim.

More on Dr. Mayer’s acclaimed work on Bullying and Teasing will appear soon in a booklet he

is preparing for a new parenting web site: www.NogginPower2.com. Visit that web site for more

details.