PROMOTING ATHLETE WELFARE IN AESTHETIC SPORTS
Recommendations for Sport Organizations, Coaches, Athletes & Their Loved Ones
In the past twenty years, both figure skating and gymnastics have received negative media coverage on a number of topics, from eating disorders and injuries, to coach abuse and doping. All too often, our young athletes are seen as robotic commodities that are replaceable when they get injured or retire, and are no longer of use.
With an increasing number of brave individuals coming forward to speak about their experiences, it is clear that many changes are needed in order to promote athlete welfare in our rinks and gyms. This book provides what educators in Sport Psychology and related fields consider "best practice" recommendations and information from empirical studies that provide guidance on how to create an environment that assures the safety of our youth.
"This is a thoroughly researched exploration of the abusive cultures within figure skating and gymnastics. Not only does this book outline the core issues that create a culture of abuse, but it posits evidence-based solutions. This type of framework would have made a world of difference in my own athletic career, and I plan on using this research while engaging with the next generations of skaters."
Author & Elite Figure Skater
"Promoting Athletic Welfare in Aesthetic Sports is a must read for parents and coaches of young athletes who are considering traveling the path of highly competitive/elite gymnastics or figure skating. Aimie persuasively discusses the historical systemic framework that these sports exhibit and gives recommendations for much needed change. She brings into light the inherent dark side of the sport(s) which only serves to educate and initiate steps forward towards a safer sport for those just beginning to find love and joy in these alluring sports."
Gymnast Consultant & NCAA Head Coach
"This book is so important. Diving into the statistics of what is threatening the welfare of athletes is very powerful and needs to be a required reading for any coach in an aesthetic sport. Laying out the issues and then presenting thought questions as well as solutions to those issues backed up by scientific study was so helpful."
Professional Figure Skater & Coach
"The further I distance myself from the competitive skating world, the more I’m able to look back and observe it through an objective lens and see that so much of what I and so many others experienced was not healthy or normal. Aimie does an excellent job of honing in on particular systemic issues to paint a very realistic picture of what these young athletes go through and how it influences them beyond the sport later in life. I hope that someday there will be a systemic change. As a former elite athlete who is still learning to find her way through the intimidating world, I thank you."