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The high school sports season is now under way and team chemistry is beginning to develop.
The one thing than can undermine that chemistry is hazing.
Hazing has existed since the time of ancient Greece. The tradition can even escalate each year as each group of athletes believes they need to add their own stamp. The harmless ideas of young athletes can grow into a critical problem for a coach and team.
Student athletes set a standard of behavior among the student population and there is no place for mental and physical hazing. Professional football players receive publicity for their hazing activities which creates a poor example for young athletes.
Athletic administrations and coaches need to be proactive to fend off hazing by establishing strict guidelines to handle hazing issues. Research indicates that when asked, students state that the way to stop hazing is adult intervention with strong disciplinary action. Continuous education on the topic of hazing will keep awareness high. It will also dispel the myths that hazing will bring a team together or that it is a team building exercise.
A great article on the topic of hazing can be found in the Spring 2010 edition of the Interscholastic Athletic Administration, â€œClear Horizonsâ€ by Colleen McGlone. Team chemistry is best built through hard work toward attaining the common goal of success. There is nothing cool of humorous about hazing!