Invincibility and Inequality in Sports : How Coaches, Parents, and Societal Factors Affect the Attitudes of Male, High-School Athletes
MetadataShow full item record
This research aims to find the causes of feelings of invincibility in male, high school athletes by looking at inequalities in the U.S. educational system as well as attitudes and actions of coaches, parents, and society as a whole. Specific points of interest include socioeconomic status, race, and gender. Interviews were conducted with five coaches of male sports at an affluent private school in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan in order to gain information about how they perceive and treat their athletes. Questions about parents and coaches' relationships with them were asked as well. Research was also done through studying literature on race, gender, socioeconomic status, and coaching in both sports and schools. Together, all of the research showed that if influential people such as coaches and parents preach and exemplify respectful and considerate behaviors, many athletes will respond well to them and do the same. If these people try to become friends instead of mentors, athletes are more likely to act out and see what they can get away with. It is also true that sports have a different meaning based on the society in which they are played. Some athletes are given every piece of equipment they could possibly want, while others must work for them. Some are taught that academics are the most important part of school, while others are taught that sports are a "way out." Regardless of the situation, when it comes to male, high-school sports, a mix of fun and opportunities to thrive with emphases on respect and mentoring is more likely to make a well-rounded athlete and person than an environment without boundaries and chances for success.