July 6 – July 12, 2014
Welcome to week one hundred nineteen of the Sports Doing Good newsletter. This week’s 10 stories include:
- Senior Athletes Defy Stereotypes Of Aging In Stunning Photos
- LeBron: Star Reconnects With a Special Place in His Heart
- There’s a new kick on course: FootGolf
- Pepsi® Pairs Young Brazilian Talent for Latest Beats Of The Beautiful Game Short Film
- Sony and streetfootballworld donate 25 portable football stadiums to benefit 30,000 children in community projects across Latin America
- Boston Doctors Can Now Prescribe Bike-Share Membership To Patients
- MLB and the Minnesota Twins Announce 2014 All-Star Week Community Schedule
- Lacrosse targeting Olympics return at 2024 Summer Games
- Boys & Girls Club Kids Around the Country Race to Log One Million Minutes of Jumping, Leaping and Playing to Stay Fit this Summer with Triple Play
- A Troubled Childhood Shaped Patrick Willis Into A Forgiving Adult And An NFL Powerhouse
There is a touch of sadness that comes with this week’s Sports Doing Good newsletter. No, it is not sadness for the Miami Heat (welcome back to mediocrity, guys). It is the realization that the World Cup ends today and this glorious event full of hope, intrigue, passion, national pride, and love won’t be back until 2018. However, we are sure that all of those feelings – hope, intrigue, passion, national pride, and love – will find their way into the sports that we play and watch every day. As a final farewell, we leave you with an amazing work of art inspired by the 2014 Cup.
In addition to a couple of World Cup-related stories this week, we are thrilled to present another eclectic mix that screams “sports doing good!” Our first story highlights the eternal nature of sport – assuming we acknowledge – via an array of stunning photos. We follow with the story of the week in the mainstream press – at least in the U.S. – and that is the return of LeBron James to his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers. We also have the opportunity this week to highlight a new sport – footgolf – one that combines two well-established methods of diversion, and is something we are very interested in trying ourselves.
Other stories this week include: a short film highlighting the music, people, and passion of the beautiful game in Brazil; a partnership between Sony and the folks at streetfootballworld; the continued emergence of lacrosse around the world; and the life and times of NFL star Patrick Willis; amongst others.
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So enjoy. And have a good week.
Senior Athletes Defy Stereotypes Of Aging In Stunning Photos
“What I saw defied visual stereotypes. These athletes are not cute, or vulnerable, or weak: They are fierce and competitive… It’s not what you are you used to seeing an older person do. It is inspiring and brave,” Jimenez told the Huffington Post in a statement. “Athletes of retirement age and older are living longer and better — they are continually breaking age group records for running, jumping and throwing that would have seemed impossible even a few decades ago.” Check out the awe-inspiring photographs below of the seniors as they shot put, sprint, throw the javelin, and even pole vault.
Sprinters, 85 and over. Angela Jimenez
LeBron: Star Reconnects With a Special Place in His Heart
And that made the native son’s return from South Beach to the city by Lake Erie more mysterious, and moving, than you might have guessed. The man who has “Akron” tattooed across his shoulder opened with a breath-catching thrust. “Before anyone ever cared where I would play basketball, I was a kid from Northeast Ohio. It’s where I walked. It’s where I ran. It’s where I cried,” he wrote in a note that felt like it was released from his depths. “My relationship with Northeast Ohio is bigger than basketball. I didn’t realize that four years ago. I do now.”
LeBron James’s announcement was personal and mature, and demonstrated his appreciation of Cleveland. Credit Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images
There’s a new kick on course: FootGolf
When the ball, struck with surprisingly good pace and accuracy, found the goal – I mean, hole – from 30 yards away, I didn’t know whether to pump my fist like Tiger Woods or pull my golf shirt over my head like an Argentine striker and sprint for the flag. How do you celebrate a totally unexpected birdie in FootGolf? That was one of the many curiosities on an afternoon last week in the 90 minutes it took to play my first-ever round of a new, fast-growing sport that combines soccer and golf.
In a photo from June 20, 2014 in Salem Township, Mich., Brian Eggenberger putts his ball during a round of FootGolf at Fox Hills Golf Course. FootGolf, a soccer-golf hybrid is helping courses draw younger, more diverse customers. Players “tee off” _ minus the tees of course _ by kicking a soccer ball from the tee box. They follow the basic rules of golf from there, advancing the ball until it drops into the oversized hole. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio) The Associated Press
Pepsi® Pairs Young Brazilian Talent for Latest Beats Of The Beautiful Game Short Film
Pepsi® today premiered the latest short film off the Pepsi Beats of the Beautiful Game album in partnership with Cine Favela, a Brazilian cultural non-profit organization providing film education and tools to aspiring new young directors from the favelas of Brazil. Pepsi shines the global spotlight on young, aspiring Brazilian talent with “Guerreira [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zrs_q_Rafc0] (Warrior Woman).” The track, by upcoming female hip-hop trio Pearls Negras from Morro do Vidigal, a Rio de Janeiro community, is seen through the eyes of youthful passion and devotion for the game by Cine Favela director Armando Fonseca.
Sony and streetfootballworld donate 25 portable football stadiums to benefit 30,000 children in community projects across Latin America
As a social legacy commitment to the 2014 FIFA World Cup™, Sony and streetfootballworld jointly presented the Street Football Stadium Project in Rio de Janeiro. The project will provide 19 community organisations in Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, Chile, Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico and Peru with portable, mini football pitches, which will allow them to run educational workshops for young people in disadvantaged areas. The workshops use football as a way to engage young people and work with them to address issues such as violence prevention, gender equality and active citizenship.
Boston Doctors Can Now Prescribe Bike-Share Membership To Patients
Boston, however, has taken an aggressive approach to making sure that everyone, regardless of income status, has an opportunity to ride–and is aware that they can. While annual Hubway memberships cost $85, the city offers an $80 discount for anyone on public assistance. That means if you live in low-income housing, your membership just costs $5. And, as of late March, doctors can prescribe memberships for those who qualify. “What we’ve found is everyone seems to be interested [in the bike-share program]. And that was a relief,” says Boston Bikes director Nicole Freedman. “It’s just about reaching people in different ways. And maybe it wasn’t through Facebook and Twitter, like we normally would.”
MLB and the Minnesota Twins Announce 2014 All-Star Week Community Schedule
Projects Supporting Youth, Veterans and Families in Need, Mark the Most Extensive Community Legacy Effort in All-Star Game History/More Than $8 Million To Be Donated To Local Projects and National Charitable Initiatives… As a complement to the Midsummer celebration of Baseball and the Minnesota Twins, the events and initiatives will seek to impact the lives of local veterans and underserved and special needs youth, place a focus on improving the health and well-being of local citizens, support cancer research, and highlight the importance of safety and environmental consciousness.
Lacrosse targeting Olympics return at 2024 Summer Games
Hayes said the FIL is confident of the sport making a return to the Olympics after it reached several major milestones in recent years. SportAccord, the umbrella organisation for more than 100 international federations and organisations, accepted the FIL as a member in 2012. The International World Games Association (IWGA) did likewise last year and in April lacrosse was accepted as a participant sport in the 2017 World Games in Wroclaw, Poland. Hayes said the World Games could serve as a platform to further increase the sport’s international profile. “The future looks good,” Hayes told Lacrosse Magazine.
Boys & Girls Club Kids Around the Country Race to Log One Million Minutes of Jumping, Leaping and Playing to Stay Fit this Summer with Triple Play
Boys & Girls Clubs of America believes that all kids deserve a great future. Through the organization’s Great Futures Campaign, Clubs and supporters are working to mobilize our country around the critical issues facing America’s youth. Boys & Girls Clubs are committed to leading the way, assuring that every young person who enters a Club is on track to graduate from high school on time, prepared to succeed in college or a career, demonstrating good character and living a healthy lifestyle. The Triple Play program motivates kids to be healthy by providing nutrition and health education and more access to healthy foods, and encouraging avoidance of risky behaviors and a lifelong commitment to fitness.
A Troubled Childhood Shaped Patrick Willis Into A Forgiving Adult And An NFL Powerhouse
Seven years into his NFL career, Patrick Willis has already taken his place among the all-time great linebackers. At 29, he is the chief enforcer for the San Francisco 49ers’ unforgiving defense, earning seven consecutive Pro Bowl invites and six All-Pro awards. And it’s not a stretch to say that on-field success can be traced to the resilience he learned as a child.…”I’m just comfortable with where I’ve come from and where I am today,” Willis told HuffPost. “I don’t take that for granted because I know what it’s like to have nothing and I know what it’s like to have something. I promise you that it feels better to have something. … I just stay humble and thankful and just be me.”
NFL linebacker Patrick Willis (center): “I feel like what makes me successful is my ability to stay who I am and be who I have always been.” | ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Sarbjit “Sab” Singh