I love lacrosse! Thanks to my past team mates Jane Walsh and Elaine McMullin Descoteaux for inviting me to do a keynote for female national box lacrosse championship players in 2017. It was an opportunity for me to give back and share my love of the sport. Lacrosse always has been my most favourite sport of the many that I have played.
I started playing lacrosse around 47 years ago (yes, females played lacrosse back then) in Shannon Park Wallis Heights with coaches Cliff Friesen and Donald Koharski. I have so many great memories of those days, We were lucky enough to play lacrosse in Ontario ,the CNE and in Vancouver, We went on to win the NS championships in 1973, so many fun memories.
Today I am a registered Psychologist, I was an educator for the past 40 years and I retired as a School Counsellor in a self- directed High School in Calgary three years ago this June.
None of that would have been possible without lacrosse. In 1976 I was awarded a lacrosse Scholarship from Canada Fitness and Amateur Sport . It paid for most of my University Education. I am so, so grateful for that today!
Lacrosse shaped my future.
I stopped playing lacrosse a year ago, but would play drop in if it were still on today. I joined again as an adult in 2008 and loved every moment. I am 61 years old and I played for the Calgary Women’s Master Lacrosse league until I was 60. I can’t run …. but boy can I shoot Tracy Klusky past captain of the Calgary Roughnecks once told me I had golden hands! I’m also really good at being a cherry picker …
Here is a video I put together a while back about the love of the game.
I hope all young lacrosse players think about these 5 things
- Find your purpose
- Play for the love of the sport , play for a lifetime
- Be Passionate
- Pay it Forward
Find your purpose and be the leader you can be. You can be a leader on and off the floor. I would like to encourage young women worldwide to play this great sport!!!! Not only young women, but moms too. Yes, and dad’s too.
If there isn’t a team where you live START ONE . If there isn’t a scholarship to be found CREATE ONE or find someone who can. We live in a world where social media CAN be used for good SO DO IT be a good digital citizen and connect with others who want the best for young women in sports.
Did you know that 44% of girls between the ages of 3-17 don’t participate in sports? 84% of adult women don’t participate in sports at all. WE CAN CHANGE that stat TODAY. For those of you playing, you are the lucky ones because you get to play the greatest game on earth. So get out there PROMOTE this great game. YOU CAN BE A LEADER. According to Anita Franklin of the IOC “When a young woman athlete triumphs, she has become a role model for her family, her community and even her country” I KNOW YOU CAN TOO!
PLAY FOR THE LOVE OF THE SPORT and do it lifelong IF I CAN … YOU CAN TOO! Play fair , play respectfully and play hard.
BE PASSIONATE and always be kind. Life will give you back tenfold what you have given out. Passionate people according to research are happier and experience greater well being. My passions have afforded me great friendships, lifelong friendships that I treasure to this day. We have had so much fun together because of sport.
PERSEVERE when you persevere in sports and in life you get back up and keep going. Life throws us all challenges. We are all going to make mistakes and that’s OK that is the way we learn. Lacrosse taught me to never give up!
PAY IT FORWARD you will learn many lessons through lacrosse. You can pay it forward by helping others. Maybe you will coach or volunteer in some capacity or maybe you will find small ways to give back, but make sure you just do it!
ONE PERSON CAN INDEED MAKE A PROFOUND DIFFERENCE that person could be YOU.
OUR NATIONAL SUMMER SPORT IS THE BEST.
I hope you as young women who play lacrosse go out there and make a difference not just in lacrosse, but in life and remember all the things that lacrosse has given you.! Sports helped me become a better human being and i hope some of you who read this will find that sports does that for you too be it lacrosse or any other sport, many of which I have loved and played like lacrosse, ringette, hockey, basketball, volleyball, baseball, and my latest love pickleball.
I hope you just play … it’s great for your overall well being. and it’s just plain fun!