Are you a white middle class male?

Steve cram expressed his concern that athletics is basically "white middle class sport" and that only white middle class males can afford to volunteer to coach resulting in a lack of role models for budding athletes.

do you consider yourself a white middle class male? are you in coaching? how do feel about what Cram is saying?

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Comments

  • Ummm.....

    Has he watched an international athletics competition lately?

  • don't get your point wilkie, he was specifically referring to coaches probably at grass roots level. what's signifcant at international meets? more black and other ethinic minority coaches from UK?
  • I've not read/heard what he actually had to say, but based on what you've told us he's talking about role models as though a lack of non-middle class white male coaches is hampering athletes from ethnic minorities.

    However, top UK athletes (ie. those competing internationally)  from ethnic minorities seem to be doing pretty well, and presumably had the same kind of coaches when they were starting out.

    They are also acting as role models themselves for younger athletes coming up.

  •  but how many of them actually go into coaching? i know kelly holmes is doing a bit but really with emerging athletes, colin jackson,linford christie,john regis, darren campbell? don't hear much about them doing any coaching. i may be wrong but they'll make more money doing consultancy work than grass roots coaching, and there's nothing wrong with that. all the coaches at opur local club are white, mabybe not middle class as i haven't asked them about their perceived social status,but they are white and mostly male.

  • What I was trying to say was that perhaps it doesn't matter - if those world class athletes made it to the top, despite a 'lack' of role models of their own ethnicity back when they were starting out, perhaps the ethnicity of your coach is irrelevant.

    Successful athletes will be role models, whether they are coaching or not.

    I don't know any coaches to offer an opinion on their class/ethnicity, but I'm sure they will mostly be white - so is the population of the UK, after all.

  • i agree it "shouldn't" matter but race does have an impact. successful athletes again should be role models but the evidence is to the contrary isn't it? since the days of christie/jackson etc where is the next generation if those athletes are role models? maybe it's a different thing, the reluctance to work hard maybe. certainly in my profession as a teacher so many youn people from white and black backgrounds are looking for easy success with as little hard work involved.it may sound like a generalisation but that's my experience from teaching and working with them( mostly males it should be added) that's probably true in sporting terms too. i think in christie's generation you had to work hard to get anywhere,even get respect.think circumstances are a little different now.

     i believe what cram is trying to say is that the population that athletics has traditionally drawn from is the afro-caribbean one.if we don'yt have those role models from that population to actually get down and coach then we will lose the talent to other areas.

    PS: i don't pretend to know the answer

  • colin jackson,linford christie,john regis, darren campbell? don't hear much about them doing any coaching.

    So the role models are there, the experience is there - I think the simple answer is Crammo having a chat with the athletes above and encouraging them to do their but if they're not already.

    I'd say this issue was far more pronounced in football. Thousands of black players and, since the departure if Ruud Gullit, only one black coach that I can think of  - somewhere in the lower leagues and I can't even think of his name!  Not sure it makes it a "problem" necessarily but it is very obvious.

  • I thought Linford Christie was coaching?

    But does it really matter what colour a coach is?  Surely all a potentially good athlete wants is a good coach that can help to push them forward I would have thought their race would be largely irrelevant?

  • I'm not sure if it matters or if that's even the point.

    I do think it's interesting to consider whether, as Cram apparently says, only white middle class men can afford to volunteer to coach. That's more the point, in my view.

  • i'm a working class rough old biulder! i'm also a level 2 uk:a coaching

    i'm also a crap runner.

    do i fit the bill.? 

  • " I'd say this issue was far more pronounced in football. Thousands of black players and, since the departure if Ruud Gullit, only one black coach that I can think of  - somewhere in the lower leagues and I can't even think of his name!  Not sure it makes it a "problem" necessarily but it is very obvious."

    paul ince is doing a pretty good job at MK Dons but you're right not many Black managers but talent still coming through, possibly because the financial rewards are greater in football.

    "But does it really matter what colour a coach is?  Surely all a potentially good athlete wants is a good coach that can help to push them forward I would have thought their race would be largely irrelevant?"

    should be irrelevant but it isn't all the time. it's an issue of understanding where you are from, racially that is. sure there are great white coaches who have helped black athletes(Ron Roddan) but maybe that's becoming a political issue now, " black person succeeds because of white coach", you can see that in some minds.

  • mini me,

     is there such a thing as a working class builder these days? the amount you guys chargeimage

  • Yep he still has "Builders arse"
  • Tradesmen are the new middle class.

    Minime may be a bit of a rough tradesman but I'm sure he's classy

  • And what about the women? How many female coaches are there out there? But then of course top class female coaches wouldnt get much press as female sport isnt media friendly apparently. But at grass roots.........are they being encouraged? Or is it too male an atmosphere for most of them?

    I'm a female white middle class coach.

  • On the point rasied.

    This is more "multi culture" bolx. There are fast black runners, they will be spotted and run. If they are good they will be coached. Be it by a man, woman jew muslem or what ever. Cardiff althetics club is proof of this(google who they launched onto the world stage)

    It is a UK wide culture that football and to a lesser extent rugby and cricket(but these are middle class white sports) are the sports to do as they "will pay the bills" why train like a tw*t and earn about 22k like tim don(i know money from sponsers etc) end of the day athletics has such a narrow field for high earning many don't bother to start in the 1st place.

  • good point fin! think women's athletics in the UK is probably at a lower ebb than the men's is it not?
  • Oh and there is the small point of f*ck all athletics faciltys!
  • tri taffa,

            agree about rugby but cricket in my area is now drawing largely from the Indian and Sri lankan population rather than the afro-caribbean and white ones.

  • LOL travis.

    Glamorgan boy so we just get any reject going!

    You say about Indian and Sri lankan population is it this group are drawn to criket due to this thing the goverment call "culture" I hardly see any ethnic runners in welsh races.

    expressed his concern that athletics is basically "white middle class sport" and that only white middle class males can afford to volunteer to coach resulting in a lack of role models for budding athletes.

    Is it possible that many "groups" don't wish to compete or can't compete as there are no facilitys? The goverment is blabing all about olymics but typical NU-labour can't see the trees for the wood?

  • What about the culture minister's announcement that recreational cycling, walking, jogging, will no longer be classed as sport and therefore no longer eligible for funding. Most people's role models, the one's that really count are people they are close to, not the stars. Watching a mate take up running and succeed is much more encouraging than watching paula radcliffe do a marathon, and much more likely to get people involved. I might be in tears alongside kelly on the podium, but I'll have forgotten that feeling when I'm struggling to walk up a hill.

    I didn't take up running til my 30s, most of my runners/clients are also 30s+. Research shows that a fit active mother is far more likely to bring up fit active "sporty" kids than an inactive one, and also has more effect than an active dad. Active fathers are the norm, active mothers are unusual. I think the government likes the idea of medals creating a fit nation, but let's face it.............it's called elite sport for a reason! What about the other 99.9% of us??

  • Fin

    Agree. The goverment want the best result for least money or thinking on they part. This is why I harrang my MP as much as possible. He wants to earn his cash. Then he has to represent me even though I did't vote for the NU-Labour idiot.

  • I don't think it is the ability of only white middle class males to afford to coach, that is the issue.

    I think there is also the matter of a culture for charitable activity and volunteering that is a wider point.

    I would celebrate and welcome any and all who volunteer and give of their time and expertise in developing others, raising money, fighting for causes in which they believe, etc etc.  I may disagree with their point of view, but I'd far rather a committed person than an apathetic sponge.

    I don't think the word "afford" helps really.  Do they really need to spend a great deal of money?  As I understand it, there is a time commitment from those willing to coach, but I wouldn't have thought that middle class people have significantly more time to give than other classes.

  • I SO am a white middle class male

    and I agree with ex-pat scot

    the word "afford" is (calculatedly?) misleading

    I don't see where "white" is relevant at all 

    And what it needs is people's time, and I don't think M-C Ms are much better off for that
    than anyone else, apart possibly from M-C Fs.

  • idea rings bells with me -now I understand why i find some the forum a bunch of judgmental, self righteous tossers -with the empathy of an housebrick.. i am trying to get over my mc ism though-lol 

  • Yeah, nothing worse than being judgemental....
  • I'm sure that would be an interesting point, Clyde, if I had any idea what you meant.

    Or did you get into this thread instead of the 'paying fatties to lose weight' thread by mistake?
  • No I took "afford" to mean "be able to" (time, fewer other committments, the ability to get away) rather than afford in terms of money.
  • Fair enough, in which case, do you think WMCMs are more able to afford
    it than other people?
  • I think you may be right Wilkie image

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