Good Men Project Sports is having the best conversation no one else is having about the intersection of sports, masculinity and the social issues of our time. And we’re having fun doing it.
Covering Sports at The Good Men Project:
Our mission is to publish thoughtful pieces that we can build dialogue around on issues that connect sports with our larger culture and society. This means, a mix of ‘the good’ and ‘the bad,’ from the beauty and grace of sports, teamwork, role models, from humor to poignant, to the tough stuff where Sports acts like a prism and amplifier of our culture, including bullying, abuse, privilege, racism, sexism, and dealing with issues of masculinity.
Sports have traditionally been very masculine. And, in many ways, it remains a bastion of traditional masculinity by excluding others who don’t fit the mold. Why is this?
— Most sports involve strength (even if they also involve other skills)
— Star athletes get multi-million dollar contracts, they become “financial successes” overnight, a key definer in the mythical “real man.”
— The very fact that sports are competitive makes a it privileged hierarchy.
— There is “locker room talk” and “boys clubs” and “deals made on golf courses” — all of which are designed to exclude.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. Sports can be rich and inclusive too. Sports can also be a wonderful platform to dig in and talk about larger issues.
At Good Men Project Sports, we are looking at the multi-dimensionality of sports, just like we are looking at the multi-dimensionality of men. What we are doing at #GMPSports is making sports –and the conversation around sports– more inclusionary. This is a profound change –changing the very fabric of sports and masculinity– we think for the better.
The thing is —
— You can love football and still worry about the impact of concussions.
— You can hate competitive sports but love to run.
— You can be a super-genius and still want to zone out by watching your favorite football team
— You can be a sports fanatic and agree that there shouldn’t be homophobia or hazing in locker rooms.
— You can be a golf lover and still laugh when golf is “explained” through humor.
You can be a sports fan and a sci-fi geek. You can be a weightlifter and your mother’s daughter. You can be a sports fanatic and have great romantic relationships. The beauty of sports is the stories that bind us, and the stories that connect to different aspects of lives. We are more inclusive by the way we cross-over sports into other areas – ethics, social justice, sex/love/relationships, mental health, and business.
We are more inclusive at our very core. Our sports writing team has Editors from all over the world. A range of nationalities, occupations. Men, women.
Also, sometimes we sing:
We want to be known as the place that has a different kind of sports writing. A different way of looking at sports.
And we are as excited about Good Men Project Sports as we are about just about anything.
Check out our Lineup of Weekly Features (Click Any Blue Box Below To See Our Series!)
So…This Happened is a package that breaks down the issues from three happenings from the world of sports.
Say What?! is our weekly round up of stories from worldwide sport…as told through quotes.
On Greatness is our weekly inspirational sports quote, topped off with an inspiring photograph.
The Sports Dump is an out-with-the-bad-in-with-the-good column that looks at a ‘bad’ story from the week of sports, and then tells one of the ‘good’ ones.
Each week, Sports Explained takes an off-beat, humorous, and pop-culture infused look at a sport, and breaks it down for you.
Doing It Right highlights athletes making an impact on the world through charitable causes or social action.
Beyond the Lens is storytelling through sports photography, taking one image and telling the tale behind it.
Beneath the Surface takes a look at a difficult ethical question from the world of sports.
Dave & Dave tackle stories on the global sports beat, with a focus on Aussie Rules Football.
Who Are We?
Michael Kasdan is a Lead Editor and the Senior Sports Editor for The Good Men Project. He attempts to lead this wonderful bunch. He is also a father of two who lives in Maplewood, NJ. He loves all sports, and enjoys creative ways to tell stories and being both funny and serious, often at the same exact time. Among the topics he is passionate about are social activism, health and welfare, education, mental health, and youth sports. Mike has has spoken on a variety of issues in major media networks, including CNN (Headline News) and Al Jazeera America, and his writings have appeared in well-known publications such as The Huffington Post, Salon, Yahoo! Parenting, The Daily Dot, and Redbook. He enjoys playing basketball, biking, fumbling around on the guitar, and an on-again-off-again relationship with running. Mike spends entirely way too much time on Facebook and can be found (over)sharing and linking on a variety of topics @michaelkasdan.
Wai Sallas lives in Los Angeles with his wife and son. When he’s not persuading his son to be a lefty, he owns a gym specializing in child development. Wai covers a range of sports-related topics, including cross-over pieces that touch on relationships, parenting, and pop culture. He’s essentially our Beyonce. Wai’s articles have been featured on ESPN.com, Yahoo!, SI.com, and AOL Sports. He is on Twitter @DadDiary.
David Packman is the International Sports Editor for The Good Men Project. After many years as a global communications senior executive and founder of a multinational PR agency, David began quietly questioning his life path. The whisper became a roar in 2011 when he was diagnosed with a rare blood disorder. He shifted gears, simplified his existence, and now spends his time exploring mind, body and environment as a partner in Chi Lab. He has studied in fields as diverse as sports and society, epigenetics and even The Beatles. He enjoys writing about tennis and Aussie Rules Football, as well as issues that transcend sports and become life stories. David and his wife Kate live in Melbourne, Australia, where they raise their young son. He is on Twitter @packman
Adam Crawford is the author of The Old Soul Blog, which is dedicated to the memory of his daughter, Layla. His writings mostly focus on personal growth and the psychology of living. But he has jumped into GMP Sports with two feet, exploring the tough ethical questions in Beneath the Surface and writing about golf, baseball, college basketball, the human stories behind all sports, and a range of other topics. Adam is the author of one novel and a collection of essays to date. You can follow him on Twitter @chandlercrawf4d.
Shiney Sparks is a woman who is into sports, especially Olympic Weightlifting and CrossFit. She is also passionate about fitness/sports for children. When she is not in the gym, she is busy creating play-based learning experiences for young children. She enjoys writing about sports as it crosses-over to life lessons, as well as leadership and business. She is currently based in Singapore, and she can’t live without her coffee. She is on Twitter @ShineySparks
Tor Constantino is a former journalist, best-selling author and current PR guy from Philadelphia with 25+ years experience as a professional writer. He’s been married (to the same woman) for nearly 20 years and they have three children. Tor enjoys covering family friendly sports-related pieces, including fun video posts that get the entire family involved, as well pieces about non-traditional sports, like dance. He also writes regularly at his blog. You can connect with him on Twitter @torcon and on Facebook.
Justin Ricklefs is a sales guy at heart, who loves the art of putting a good deal together. He has worked in college athletics, the front office of an NFL team, and enterprise technology companies. He and his wife, Brooke have five young children and are often asked in public, “are those ALL yours?” They call Kansas City, MO home. You can connect with him on his website and follow him on Twitter @justinricklefs.
Kimanzi Constable is a former bread delivery guy who self-published two books that have sold over 86,000 copies. In the last year he has lost 170 pounds and moved his family to Maui, Hawaii. You can usually find him writing while enjoying an ocean view. He is a published author, international speaker, coach, and #1 fan of Taylor Swift. He’s a contributing writer for The Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, and Mind Body Green. He is also business editor at The Good Men Project. Even though he ‘stepped back’ from Sports, we keep dragging him back. You can connect with him on Twitter @KimanziC
Want to play on our team? Have your own story to share? Want to get published?
If there is a topic you want to write about, reach out to us! Send us your story ideas about the intersection of sports, life, storytelling and/or masculinity. Submit an article, here. Or reach out to any one of our above Editors.
You can also check out and submit your personal stories to our ongoing Why We Run, From The Frontlines . . . of Sports, and Sports Ink series. Want to riff on a sport over email and turn it into a piece?! Check out our Sports Exchange series.
Sign up for our Weekly ‘Best of Sports’ email newsletter, a collection of our top stories, here.
Photo Credit: Flickr/George A. Spiva Center for the Arts