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PCA Hangout: Bullying And Locker Room Culture

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In response to the scandal in which Jonathan Martin suffered bullying and hazing from Richie Incognito and others within the Miami Dolphins, Positive Coaching Alliance recruited this panel for a Google+ Hangout to discuss bullying and locker room culture.

Isaiah Kacyvenski (@isaiahkaz), former NFL player, shares his locker room experiences and what is considered “normal”. Macho actions and personalities are held in higher regard in this professional sports setting and it has become the cultural norm to make this behavior acceptable. Often those who don't fit this norm get singled out and are perpetually brought down and bullied. This type of behavior disrupts the potential for teamwork and camaraderie.

Though we read about these instances occurring in professional sports, this happens at the youth level as well. CoachUp representative Victoria Barnaby talks about her experience as a high school softball player where she encountered such negative hazing that she decided to quit the sport altogether.

The panelists remind us that bullying happens in so many ways, often off the field, making it difficult for coaches to address. However, coaches, parents and team leaders have a responsibility to establish themselves as authorities and create early team environments where bullying is not accepted.

Panel Members:
David Jacobson (@CoachDaveJake) (moderator), Positive Coaching Alliance
Victoria Barnaby, CoachUp
Isaiah Kacyvenski, MC10 Inc. and former NFL player
Elliott Almond, San Jose Mercury News