From the Aspen Institute — Future of the U.S. Olympic Movement: Reimagining Goals Beyond Medals

FasterSkierMay 24, 2019

A few disclaimers first. Metrics suggest people want quick reads and quick-view content. The above video is neither. Yet it is full of ideas for Olympic sport.

On May 22, the Aspen Institute hosted a forum titled the Future of the U.S. Olympic Movement: Reimagining Goals Beyond Medals.

It consisted of a two-part discussion captured in this long-form embedded video from the Aspen Institute’s Sports & Society Program. The first part of the video features an interview with the U.S. Olympic Committee’s CEO Sarah Hirshland. Tom Farrey, the Executive Director of the Sports & Society Program, conducts the interview. Farrey was recently featured in the HBO Real Sports segment titled The Norwegian Way.

The second part of the video, which begins at 1:19:00, features a panel discussion with the following individuals:

  • Shannon Miller, seven-time Olympic gymnastics medalist
  • Han Xiao chair of USOC Athletes’ Advisory Council, former table tennis player
  • Max Cobb, National Governing Bodies Council chair, U.S. Biathlon CEO
  • Cindy Boren, Washington Post sports reporter

FasterSkier readers may notice Max Cobb’s name — it has become synonymous with biathlon in the U.S.

Sport NGBs and clubs are under greater pressure to implement and enforce SafeSport code since the sexual abuse revelations in sports like gymnastics and swimming came to light. The panel discussion speaks to the need for change and the need to protect athletes from other non-sexual transgressions that adversely impact athletes. Panel members do discuss initiatives to bring about that change.

The panel also explores the need to ensure the mental health needs of elite athletes long after the Olympic glow fades, and how to build youth sports systems with the whole child in mind.

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