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Eddie Goldman is the host and producer of the No Holds Barred international podcast, the publisher of the No Holds Barred blog, and a senior contributing editor at the ADCC News.

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Thursday, December 19, 2013

No Holds Barred: Jens Sejer Andersen on Good Governance, Democracy, and Corruption in Sport 




On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman once again spoke with Jens Sejer Andersen, the international director of Play the Game.

Based in Denmark, Play the Game is an international conference and communication initiative aiming to strengthen the ethical foundation of sport and promote democracy, transparency, and freedom of expression in sport.

The Play the Game 2013 conference was held October 28-31, 2013, in Aarhus, Denmark, with 148 speakers addressing many of the burning issues in world sport. All the conference presentations are now online.

We spoke with Jens Sejer Andersen by Skype on Tuesday.

Among the many key areas of interest and issues which he identified as being focused upon at this conference were: match-fixing, especially in international football (soccer); "mega-events: what are they good for?"; "the quality of sports governance, the quality of the sports leaders, their honesty"; "doping as a permanent item on the international agenda"; and the "whole concern about which interests is sport serving".

Describing this as "the best conference we've had so far," he also explained that there is more "public involvement" in the fight for good governance and against the various forms of corruption in sport than ever before. One of the many examples of this was the popular uprising in Brazil earlier this year against the corruption and massive government spending on the 2014 FIFA World Cup while the needs of the people were not being met.

We also discussed how the "sports-business complex" uses mega-events to their advantage and often against the interests of the majority of people; the issue of rights for LGBT people in Russia and the upcoming 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics; who are the new and current "superpowers" in world sport; the exposure in the media of horrific working conditions for those involved in the construction of facilities for the 2022 Qatar World Cup; the lack of democracy and good governance in many of the international federations which are affiliated with the International Olympic Committee; how it is "outrageous" that safety for athletes is not the number one issue in many sports; allegations of corruption in some of the lower-profile sports such as weightlifting and wrestling; the growing problem of many youths not being involved in sports at the grassroots level and having sedentary lifestyles; the role of the sports media; and much, much more.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link doesn't work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is also available on mobile phones and iPads through Stitcher.

Also, No Holds Barred is available through iTunes.

The No Holds Barred theme song is called "The Heist", which is also available on iTunes by composer Ian Snow.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the web site of the world's greatest ring announcer, Lenne Hardt. Need a unique and cool combat sports-related gift? At LenneHardt.com, you can order personalized messages, wedding calls, ringtones, phone answering messages, and more, all recorded by Lenne herself, in the style of your choice. For more information, go to LenneHardt.com.

ONE Fighting Championship. ONE FC is Asia's largest and most prestigious mixed martial arts event. ONE FC features the best Asian fighters and has initiated the ONE Asia Partnership Network, which includes most of the major MMA promotions and MMA gyms in Asia. For more information, go to their web site, at ONEFC.com.

GrappleGnostic, sponsored by Defense Soap. Where the will to win meets the power of knowledge. Features, interviews, analysis, health tips, and information on wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and all the grappling arts, written by some of the best writers and experts in the world. Check out their web site, a http://defensesoap.com/grapplegnostic.

Defense Soap, an effective, deep penetrating body soap with natural antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial soap ingredients. Defense Soap is the best cleansing body soap for men and women athletes who are involved in contact sports such as MMA, wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and judo, to help their antifungal, anti-ringworm, anti-jock itch strategy. Check out their web site, at http://defensesoap.com.

American Top Team. Whether you're a beginner or a champion, train with the champions in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, boxing, wrestling, grappling, and mixed martial arts at American Top Team. Check out their web site at http://americantopteam.com/.

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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

No Holds Barred: Wade Davis of You Can Play Project 




On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with Wade Davis, the executive director of the You Can Play Project.

You Can Play is, according to its web site, an organization "dedicated to ensuring equality, respect and safety for all athletes, without regard to sexual orientation." Its slogan is: "Gay athletes. Straight allies. Teaming up for respect."

The issues of respect and fairness for LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) athletes are major ones being discussed in world sport, from the controversy over Russia's law against so-called "gay propaganda" passed shortly before the start of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, to the debate in the combat sports involving transgender MMA fighter Fallon Fox and gay boxer Orlando Cruz. These are issues we addressed with Wade Davis. We spoke with him by phone Monday.

"One of the first things that we try to do at You Can Play is create a conversation," he said. "Whether you're someone who is against the idea of playing with an LGBT person or you're for it, our goal is to approach it from the perspective that we don't believe that people are inherently homophobic."

He continued, "Now there are definitely some who are, but we don't believe that the majority of people are, so we're willing to say, 'Hey, tell me what your beliefs are. I'll tell you mine. There is no right or wrong, but our goal is to really have a conversation.' If there is at least the option of having a conversation, then there is a chance that you're looking to be educated and receive some information that could potentially make you more or less likely to engage with helping to create a space for an LGBT person to play sports. We don't believe that telling someone what they believe is right or wrong helps to facilitate a conversation."

We discussed how to approach both sports organizations and fans on these issues, combat sports and views of what masculinity means, what people can do to fight homophobia and transphobia, and much more.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link doesn't work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is also available on mobile phones and iPads through Stitcher.

Also, No Holds Barred is available through iTunes.

The No Holds Barred theme song is called "The Heist", which is also available on iTunes by composer Ian Snow.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the web site of the world's greatest ring announcer, Lenne Hardt. Need a unique and cool combat sports-related gift? At LenneHardt.com, you can order personalized messages, wedding calls, ringtones, phone answering messages, and more, all recorded by Lenne herself, in the style of your choice. For more information, go to LenneHardt.com.

ONE Fighting Championship. ONE FC is Asia's largest and most prestigious mixed martial arts event. ONE FC features the best Asian fighters and has initiated the ONE Asia Partnership Network, which includes most of the major MMA promotions and MMA gyms in Asia. For more information, go to their web site, at ONEFC.com.

GrappleGnostic, sponsored by Defense Soap. Where the will to win meets the power of knowledge. Features, interviews, analysis, health tips, and information on wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and all the grappling arts, written by some of the best writers and experts in the world. Check out their web site, a http://defensesoap.com/grapplegnostic.

Defense Soap, an effective, deep penetrating body soap with natural antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial soap ingredients. Defense Soap is the best cleansing body soap for men and women athletes who are involved in contact sports such as MMA, wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and judo, to help their antifungal, anti-ringworm, anti-jock itch strategy. Check out their web site, at http://defensesoap.com.

American Top Team. Whether you're a beginner or a champion, train with the champions in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, boxing, wrestling, grappling, and mixed martial arts at American Top Team. Check out their web site at http://americantopteam.com/.

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Sunday, December 15, 2013

No Holds Barred: Your Year-End Assignment 



On this edition of No Holds Barred, with many people around the world having some free time in the last two weeks of the year, host Eddie Goldman gives you your year-end assignment. (No, there will be no test or quiz, but you will be judged in practice.)

First, study internationally what is going on in the world of sport. The International Olympic Committee has just announced a set of new proposals to combat doping, corruption, and match-fixing, in its Olympic Agenda 2020, which has been proposed by new IOC president Thomas Bach. Will these be adequate to clean up world sport? And how will these affect the combat sports?

Second, all the presentations are now online from the Play the Game 2013 conference.

Held October 28-31, 2013, in Aarhus, Denmark, 148 speakers addressed burning issues in world sport such as match-fixing, doping, lack of democracy and transparency, who benefits and who does not from the Olympics, bad governance, racism, women in sport, homophobia, the role of sports journalists, the recent mass protests in Brazil, and much more. Now online are presentations, audio, video, and photos from this conference.

Among the many essential presentations which should be studied were:

"The democratic noise of sport" by Jens Sejer Andersen.

"Making the World Safe for Capitalism: A Critique of Global Sport and Development" by John Nauright.

"The Democratization of Athletes: What if athletes determined who governed their sports?" by Peter Donnelly.

"Money, Power and Marionettes: The shift of Olympic Power" by Jens Weinreich.

In addition, the issues of concussions, head trauma, brain damage, and dementia, which were not highlighted at Play the Game 2013, are now being understood and discussed by more and more people involved in sports around the world, and this is also of particular importance to the combat sports.

So that's your year-end assignment: Study these and related issues, and follow the advice of Jens Sejer Andersen: "It is your turn to drive the funeral silence out of sport."

You can play or download No Holds Barred here and here. If one link doesn't work, please try another.

No Holds Barred is also available on mobile phones and iPads through Stitcher.

Also, No Holds Barred is available through iTunes.

The No Holds Barred theme song is called "The Heist", which is also available on iTunes by composer Ian Snow.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

LenneHardt.com, the web site of the world's greatest ring announcer, Lenne Hardt. Need a unique and cool combat sports-related gift? At LenneHardt.com, you can order personalized messages, wedding calls, ringtones, phone answering messages, and more, all recorded by Lenne herself, in the style of your choice. For more information, go to LenneHardt.com.

ONE Fighting Championship. ONE FC is Asia's largest and most prestigious mixed martial arts event. ONE FC features the best Asian fighters and has initiated the ONE Asia Partnership Network, which includes most of the major MMA promotions and MMA gyms in Asia. For more information, go to their web site, at ONEFC.com.

GrappleGnostic, sponsored by Defense Soap. Where the will to win meets the power of knowledge. Features, interviews, analysis, health tips, and information on wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and all the grappling arts, written by some of the best writers and experts in the world. Check out their web site, a http://defensesoap.com/grapplegnostic.

Defense Soap, an effective, deep penetrating body soap with natural antifungal, antiviral, and antibacterial soap ingredients. Defense Soap is the best cleansing body soap for men and women athletes who are involved in contact sports such as MMA, wrestling, grappling, jiu-jitsu, and judo, to help their antifungal, anti-ringworm, anti-jock itch strategy. Check out their web site, at http://defensesoap.com.

American Top Team. Whether you're a beginner or a champion, train with the champions in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, boxing, wrestling, grappling, and mixed martial arts at American Top Team. Check out their web site at http://americantopteam.com/.

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