Hockey Calgary along with Respect Group and Mount Royal University announced today the preliminary findings after a three year study following the implementation of the mandatory “Respect in Sport” course for all Hockey Calgary parents and coaches.
Over 1,000 people completed the online survey in the third year, which showed the majority of people believe the Respect in Sport course is beneficial and should be implemented more frequently. After taking a closer look at the study, there were three areas which were identified as the most common:
- Awareness: People who took the course said they are more aware of their behaviour and the behaviour of others.
- Integration: People who took the course said they believe to truly improve respect in behaviour, the Program needs to be more integrated into the culture. To do so, participants suggested the Program needs to be made mandatory for BOTH parents instead of the “one per household” rule.
- Accountability: Participants believe the Program is a step forward in improving respect and reducing the amount of abuse in minor hockey. Participants would like to see an increase of accountability from Hockey Calgary. This included enforcing sanctions and providing safe opportunities for parents to report incidents without putting themselves or their children at risk.
“Over three years ago, we undertook a study to look at the perceived impact of the mandatory Respect in Sport program. Over the three years, we have heard from numerous parents about how the RIS program has increased the awareness of respect in hockey, and at the same time, how they wish to have more integration and accountability to continue to move the respect issue forward. We have also seen Hockey Calgary take the information from the study and develop and implement initiatives to continue to focus on respect,” said Julie Booke, Associate Professor Department of Physical Education and Recreation, Mount Royal University.
The survey was conducted throughout the first three years of the mandatory online RIS Program. The three seasons were: 2010-2011, 2011-2012 and 2012-2013. Over 14,500 people had completed the RIS course by May 2013.
After combining the three year study, it showed 32% of people would like to see the course become mandatory every year. A total of 21% of people want the course to become mandatory every other year. The other 17% of people want the course to be mandatory every three years and the last 8% said they don’t think the Program should have been implemented at all.
Hockey Calgary was the first organization in Canada to implement, and make mandatory, the RIS Program, which has now been implemented by several other Canadian Cities and provinces, including Hockey Alberta.
“It is with great pride that I congratulate Hockey Calgary on their pioneering decision to implement the Respect in Sport Parent Program. Not only were they the first organization to make the program available but that leadership has led to the certification of over 91,000 Canadian parents who are now equipped with tools to make them even better sport parents. I also applaud the great work that Mount Royal University has done, over the past three years, in conducting their ground breaking research to measure the outcomes of this initiative,” said Sheldon Kennedy, co-founder, Respect Group Inc.
Hockey Calgary will be working with RIS to be one of the first organizations to pilot the Respect in Sport PLAYER Program, which will target entry level participants (7-year-olds) and educating them on all aspects of respect, nutrition, hydration and sportsmanship.
“We will continue to work with Respect in Sport and Mount Royal University and utilize the knowledge we have following the research which expresses interest from participants to take the course more frequently,” said Kevin Kobelka, Executive Director, Hockey Calgary. “We want the game to be enjoyable, safe and fun for everyone and these online courses are bringing awareness to an ongoing issue in the game of hockey.”