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Norway's Joy of Sports For All

Published: 2022-02-02
Norway's Joy of Sports For All
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In the spirit of the authored words of ABC Wide World of Sports executive, Stanley Ross, SportsEdTV is constantly “spanning the globe to bring you the constant variety of sport.”

Our efforts recently took us to a Globe and Mail article that predicted Norway would again win more medals as the 2022 Winter Olympics.

Norway has won more Winter Olympic medals—368—than any other country and that includes 132 Gold Medals.   And popular thinking that the small Nordic country is only good as snow and ice sports is debunked by their success in warm weather sports, too.

So, how does Norway, a comparatively population sparse country do it?

It starts with a radically different approach to sports that is based on a concept known as The Joy of Sport for All, and Norway’s tenets which are covered in its Children’s Rights in Sport, a manifesto which insists that “children receive a positive experience every time they participate in sport.”

Well, the tight connection that emotionally links Stanley Ross’s “thrill of victory” to Norway’s Joy of Sport for All triggered a triangulated completion with the exhilaration of SportsEdTV’s Learn to Win technology that is anchored in the love of play.

Learn to Win is a partnered-for-sports adaptation of HeartMath technology that has been widely accepted in business, medicine, military, and government since the latter part of the 20th Century.

Its fundamental premise holds that peak performance in any endeavor requires positive feelings—joy, care, appreciation, and even love.

I've known about and practiced the HeartMath technology since 1998.  In fact, at HeartMath's invitation, I wrote a predictive piece entitled "A Vision of Sports for the 21st Century”

Here, over 30 years since and more than two decades into the 21st Century I dug deep into archives to revisit the vision.  It’s not quite as predicted, but we’re getting there.

Here’s how it read:


 I am your favorite sport.   If you love me, you’ll take out the trash.  You will take it out of your talk.  You will take it out of your walk.

Because if you love to win you’re going to have to learn to play with a song in your heart instead of soap in your mouth.  If you are playing with intimidation and nasty tactics today, you had best prepare for an attitude adjustment because real science has proven that bad acts bring bad results. 

In other words, you will be a loser in many ways.

Yeah, it’s that same science that in the '50s proved curveballs do really curve by using advances in photography.    Yes, it's that same science that in the '70s developed arthroscopic knee surgery.   And, of course, how can we forget,  it's the same science that invented instant replay so today we can prove how blind referees can be.

If you hear what I say, now, you will know what you have to do.  Listen up.

In California, there is a group of very respected scientists who have proven that the heart muscle controls access to that elusive, miraculous state that every athlete has experienced and knows as “the zone.”  

The real miracle is they have also identified how athletes can get “in the zone” more often, more frequently, and at will. 

And, do you know what?

The astonishing research proves negative emotions build real chemical walls that prohibit an athlete from ever entering “the zone.” There’s a fancy word for it.  It’s called entrainment.  

Whether you call it “the zone” or “firing on all cylinders” or "in sync" it's entrainment.  Entrainment is the harmony of the body and the mind performing as one, and in perfect concert.

Entrainment sounds so much like training, let’s call it basic training and get on with it—wear it like a badge of honor.  Play better.  Be Better.

Well, let’s just say, in hindsight, that the culture of sports and entertainment in those days might be analogized by looking at the blockbuster entertainment icons, Mel Gibson, and Bruce Willis whose Lethal Weapon and Armageddon hits dominated the big screen.

Fast forward three decades and sports have certainly evolved from trash-mouth to full-spectrum enjoyment of Ross's "human drama of athletic competition" especially while adapting Norway's Joy of Sport for All, HeartMath’s Science of the Heart, and SportsEdTV's Learn to Win coaching.