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Athlete Spotlight: Taylor Gold

Taylor Gold went from rookie to Olympian in 2014, and with wins at the Copper Mountain Grand Prix and the Burton US Open, Gold is quickly making his mark in halfpipe snowboarding. Steamboat Springs was reason enough for Gold to spend his time honing the techniques of riding, but it wasn't until seeing the sport during the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City that he decided he wanted to be a competitive snowboarder when he was seven. When he's not on the snow, Gold loves to jump on the trampoline, skateboard and play guitar. Gold is taking time in South America this summer to focus on snowboarding and prepare for the upcoming season.

Sport: Snowboard Halfpipe

How/when did you decide you wanted to compete: I decided that I wanted to compete after I watched the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake. I thought that snowboarding looked really fun, and after a couple of years of riding, I was having an awesome time and wanted to try competing to progress my riding.

Biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I think winning the US Open has been my biggest accomplishment so far. Looking at the past winners, I consider myself lucky to be a part of a group like that. It's also one of the oldest snowboarding contests out there, and one started by snowboarders for snowboarders.

Favorite moment from Sochi: My favorite moment from Sochi, as cliche as it sounds, was walking into opening ceremonies. I've always dreamed of competing at the Olympics, and it's such a crazy feeling walking out with my teammates in front of the whole world.

Goals for next season: I want to add creativity to my runs, and do everything I can to be unique. I want to continue to go bigger, be consistent, and most importantly, stay healthy.

Favorite snow destination: Steamboat. I love going home. I ride all over the world, and I love exploring, but It's so fun to come home, know the spots, and be a tour guide for friends. Especially when we get a bunch of snow.

Favorite non-snow destination: Hood River, Oregon. Every summer we go to Hood to ride the glacier, but I love the town of Hood River for summer activities. There's so much to do, and there's a great vibe wherever you go.

Favorite candy: swiss chocolate.

If you weren't a professional athlete what would you be: I would be a college student with no idea what I want to do.

If you could have dinner with one person dead or alive, who would it be: Bill Murray

One thing you can’t live without: a suitcase


Tue, 19 Aug 2014 17:47:09 +0000

TAKE 5 with U.S. Snowboarding’s Ryan Wachendorfer

From lifelong friendships to powerful life lessons to everlasting memories of thrilling victories, there are many reasons for your kids to play sports.

As a parent, you can encourage your kids to participate in, or at least try, youth sports. With so many other factors and activities pulling them in different directions, it’s important to properly frame and discuss the many rewards of playing sports.

Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive sat down with U.S. Snowboarding standout Ryan Wachendorfer to get his thoughts on the importance of playing sports along with the life lessons he learned.

In our exclusive TAKE 5 interview Ryan told us that he believes the biggest life lesson taught by sports is that anything truly enjoyable or valuable must be earned in life – over time.

“The biggest life lesson I’ve learned through sports is that nothing in life worth having comes easy,” said Ryan. “A good work ethic will take you far and building strong relationships will go a long way.”

Ryan said that he still talks with his parents about the value of hard work in both life and sports, as well as the challenges that come with snowboarding.

“My parents and I talk about how overcoming challenges in snowboarding relates to life, and working hard is important,” said Ryan.

Ryan said that snowboarding offers several compelling reasons for kids to practice and compete out on the hills and slopes – along with many valuable lessons to be learned.

“Snowboarding is so much more than a sport, and there is so much to learn from snowboarding,” said Ryan. “I never thought snowboarding would take me all over the world and allow me to meet tons of awesome people that I will have relationships with the rest of my life.”

To read the full TAKE 5 interview with Ryan, visit PlayPositive.com. And come back next month for another exclusive TAKE 5 interview!

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of sportsmanship and integrity shown by people every day. We created Play Positive™, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display good sportsmanship. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off hill.

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company


Mon, 18 Aug 2014 14:40:21 +0000

Why Play Sports?

The lifelong friends you’ve made. The coaches you will never forget. The fun you had with the teammates who taught you there is more to sports than wins and losses. These are just a few of the reasons why you wouldn’t trade your youth sports experiences for anything in the world.

But will your children enjoy similar experiences?

Unfortunately, many of today’s children aren’t building memories such as these. They’re participating less and less when it comes to youth sports. Why?

Maybe the “win-at-all-costs” mentality that today pervades all levels of youth sports has taken much of the fun out of the competition. Maybe the relentless pull of new technology is responsible for luring our kids away from fields of play. Whatever the reasons, it is your job as a parent to encourage your kids to participate in, or at least try, youth sports.

If you don’t attempt to get your kids involved, not only will you assure that they miss out on very special sports memories, but you will also inadvertently perpetuate the general degradation of their health.

To help get you thinking about the ways to frame and discuss the many rewards of participating in sports to your kids, Liberty Mutual Insurance and Positive Coaching Alliance have outlined four of the central benefits of youth sports participation:

Fitness – Youth sports provide fun reasons for your kids to get off of the couch and get active.

Friendships – Teammates often become life-long best friends.

Wisdom – From learning how to overcome individual challenges to how to succeed on a team, youth sports is the platform from which many of life’s most valuable lessons are learned.

Focus – The mental preparation that it takes to succeed in youth sports provides the groundwork for being successful both in school and later in life.

For more advice and resources to help promote sportsmanship and a more positive youth sports experience to your kids, visit PlayPositive.com.

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of sportsmanship and integrity shown by people every day. We created Play Positive™, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display good sportsmanship. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the hill.

In an effort to benefit millions of youth athletes, parents and coaches, this article is among a series created exclusively for partners in the Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive™ program powered by Positive Coaching Alliance.

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance and Positive Coaching Alliance. All rights reserved. This material may not be distributed without express written permission. Any reproduction in whole or part by and individuals or organizations will be held liable for copyright infringement to the full extent of the law.


Mon, 11 Aug 2014 17:17:39 +0000

Introducing Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive™

Liberty Mutual Insurance is excited to announce our Responsible Sports program is now called the Liberty Mutual Insurance Play Positive™ program.

We will continue to deliver the same great resources and tools driven by our longstanding content partner Positive Coaching Alliance

 

This fall, join the hundreds of youth sport coaches and parents who will take our Play Positive Pledge to promote good sportsmanship in youth sports.  Teams that recruit the most supporters have the chance to earn $2,500. Learn more at PlayPositive.com/Pledge

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of sportsmanship and integrity shown by people every day. We created Play Positive, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display good sportsmanship. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the course.

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance


Mon, 04 Aug 2014 20:43:11 +0000

Goal Setting With Your Youth Athlete

Sports offer kids a unique opportunity to set, manage, and strive for personal goals in a fun and constructive environment, but they can’t do it alone.

Youth athletes need the support of coaches and parents to establish effort-focused and outcome-focused goals that allow them to test their respective limits, learn from individual challenges, and realize personal victories.

But just as no two kids are alike, no two players possess the same goals. When it comes to guiding kids along the path to personal greatness, the right tool can make a powerful difference in helping them realize their full potential. Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports, in partnership with Positive Coaching Alliance, developed the 100-Point Exercise as a tool to help youth athletes establish individual goals and achieve new personal bests.

How it works
With 100 points to allocate to individual objectives for the upcoming season, parents are encouraged to sit down with their youth athlete as they assign a point value to a series of potential goals. Whether a youth athlete is interested in having fun, becoming a better athlete, making friends, or accomplishing all of these things and more, the 100-Point Exercise helps athletes identify and prioritize their goals for maximum personal development.

Parents can also write down their goals for their youth athlete’s upcoming season.  When you are both finished share them with each other. You might be surprised at the similarities and differences. What we like best about this exercise is the amount and type of conversation it can create between you and your child.

Why it works
Designed to encourage youth athletes to play with purpose, the 100-Point Exercise serves as a visual model to help set goals that can be easily referenced throughout the season especially when  encouraging reminders are needed. Additionally, recorded goals assist parents and coaches in developing supportive strategies to help guide each player to personal victory.

Download our 100-Point Exercise tool today to get started on planning goals for the upcoming season.

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of responsibility and integrity shown by people every day. We created Responsible Sports, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display good sportsmanship. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the hill.

In an effort to benefit millions of youth athletes, parents and coaches, this article is among a series created exclusively for partners in the Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports program, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance.

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and Positive Coaching Alliance. All rights reserved. This material may not be distributed without express written permission. Any reproduction in whole or part by and individuals or organizations will be held liable for copyright infringement to the full extent of the law.


Mon, 28 Jul 2014 16:07:36 +0000

Accidents Happen. Call in Relief.

Brought to you by the Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports program

 

Liberty Mutual Insurance understands the responsibility that comes with being a snowboarding parent. And we’re committed to helping you always get home safely.

·       A standard auto insurance policy with Liberty Mutual Insurance covers a lot – including liability, collision and personal injury protection. And when you add our optional 24-Hour Roadside Assistance coverage, you’ll never have to worry about being stranded. From a jump start to a tow, 24-Hour Roadside Assistance will get you and the whole team moving again – at any time of day or night.

·       With 24-Hour Roadside Assistance coverage, you can call our dedicated number anytime, anywhere, and receive roadside assistance. This coverage requires purchase of towing and labor coverage, and is subject to applicable limits.

·       When you add our optional Unlimited Rental Coverage, we’ll pay your rental car costs for as long as it takes to repair your vehicle. You must purchase this coverage and elect to have your vehicle repaired at a Liberty Mutual-approved facility and allow us to arrange for the rental car. * Program availability varies by state and daily limits apply.

·       If your automobile is totaled in the accident, the Liberty Mutual Insurance optional Better Car Replacement™ coverage will give you the money to replace your totaled vehicle with an automobile that is one model year newer and has 15,000 less miles on it.

·       To ensure maximum safety and peace of mind, we also offer an umbrella policy that extends your coverage even further. It’s a small price to pay for a whole lot of peace of mind on the road. 

·       Make sure you don’t get stranded on your way home. Talk to one of our licensed sales representatives in your community or call us toll-free at 888-712-2166 to learn more and get a free, no-obligation quote today. Or visit us online at LibertyMutual.com or ResponsibleSports.com

*Liberty Mutual approved facility not required in the state of New York

**Optional coverage. Applies to a covered total loss. Deductible applies. Does not apply to leased vehicles and motorcycles. Not available in NC.

The descriptions of coverages and benefits are necessarily brief and are subject to policy provisions, limits, deductibles, and exclusions that can only be expressed in the policy itself. Coverages and programs vary by state and are not available in all states. For a complete explanation of coverages, please consult one of our sales representatives or call 888-712-2166.

 

Coverage underwritten and provided by Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and its affiliates, 175 Berkeley Street, Boston, MA 02116.

 

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company


Mon, 21 Jul 2014 17:55:28 +0000

TAKE 5 with U.S. Snowboarding’s Alex Deibold

When our youth athletes strive to achieve their personal best, victory is won on and off the hill. Encouraging our kids to set individual goals and focus on maximum personal effort benefits both the player and the team – in a variety of ways.

Athletes who come to realize that personal development can be even more rewarding than a win are mastery-focused athletes who build the confidence and initiative needed to succeed – in sports and in life.

Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports sat down with U.S. Snowboarding star and Bronze Medalist at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games Alex Deibold to get his thoughts on personal bests, personal statistics and personal records.

In our exclusive TAKE 5 interview, Alex, who won his Bronze Medal for the U.S. in Boardercross, told us that he “definitely did not keep track of too many personal records” when he was a youth athlete.

“I was more focused on learning and having fun,” remembered Alex.

Alex said that today, he has a much sharper and clearer focus on personal records and goals.

“I am always trying to improve,” said Alex. “I want to continue to improve my snowboarding and to stand on more World Cup podiums.”

Alex told us that focusing in on these personal bests and goals gets easier as a youth athlete matures and grows into a seasoned veteran – but it’s never too early to start growing.

“When you’re young, it’s hard to see the big picture, but if you can make even small improvements over past personal records, then it’s a step in the right direction,” said Alex.

Alex believes that youth snowboarders and skiers can go a long way in that right direction simply by “focusing on the basics.”

“Even at the most elite level, the basics are something that are always extremely important,” said Alex. “It’s easy to get frustrated when you’re trying to learn something new or improve, but at the end of the day, it’s the little things that can make the difference.”

To read the full TAKE 5 interview with Alex, visit ResponsibleSports.com. And come back next month for another exclusive TAKE 5 interview!

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of responsibility shown by people every day. We created Responsible Sports, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display responsibility. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the hill.

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company.


Mon, 14 Jul 2014 15:16:31 +0000

When Athletes Give Their Personal Best Everyone Wins

Victory is won on and off the course when youth athletes strive to achieve their personal best. Encouraging kids to set individual goals and focus on maximum personal effort benefits both the player and the team in a variety of ways. Athletes who come to realize that personal development can feel even better than a win are mastery-focused athletes who build the confidence and initiative needed to succeed in sports and in life.

Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports, in partnership with Positive Coaching Alliance, we offer the following helpful tips on how to encourage and inspire youth athletes to achieve their personal best:

  • Create a positive environment. Because meeting expectations plays a critical role in players developing self-confidence, a positive atmosphere focused on self-improvement lets athletes concentrate less on the importance of winning and more on the value of effort.
  • Set manageable goals. Help youth players identify and focus on areas that need improvement. Work with them to establish personal goals that will not only challenge their individual limits, but also inspire them to achieve new personal bests.
  • Offer support. Provide youth athletes with the resources, support and encouragement they need to perform at their maximum ability. When kids know they have the backing of parents, coaches and teammates, they’ll gain the confidence they need to strive for new levels of achievement.
  • Learn from challenges. Mistakes provide an opportunity for future success. So when players face setbacks and challenges, work with them to identify the lessons to be learned from the situation, as well as ways to quickly move forward.
  • Celebrate personal victories. While nothing quite compares to the rush of pride that comes from meeting or exceeding a personal goal, recognition of a job well done encourages youth players to strive for continued success.

The off-course lessons from on-course successes, setbacks and strivings deliver the true value of youth sports. The more coaches and parents can do to help interpret the on-course experience for youth athletes, the more youth will benefit in later life.

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of responsibility and integrity shown by people every day. We created Responsible Sports, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display good sportsmanship. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the course.

In an effort to benefit millions of youth athletes, parents and coaches, this article is among a series created exclusively for partners in the Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports program, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance.

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and Positive Coaching Alliance. All rights reserved. This material may not be distributed without express written permission. Any reproduction in whole or part by and individuals or organizations will be held liable for copyright infringement to the full extent of the law.


Wed, 09 Jul 2014 18:34:25 +0000

The Benefits of Playing Multiple Sports

For our kids, practicing and focusing on the sport they love is an important part of playing youth sports.  However, specializing in one sport from an early age can cause them to miss out on a number of benefits that could prove beneficial as they mature.

Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports and Positive Coaching Alliance share how playing multiple sports as a youth athlete offers up new learning experiences, the chance to grow both mentally and physically and protect against our youth athlete burning out.

But how do you encourage your youth athletes to branch out and try a new sport during the offseason of their favorite sport? 

Liberty Mutual Insurance has created a helpful tool that highlights some surprising and meaningful information on the benefits of playing multiple sports, ranging from improving diet and health, impacting academic performance, aiding in social development and helping prevent injuries.

We hope that these statistics help your youth athletes consider trying a new sport, if for no other reason than participating in a new and fun learning experience.

Download the tool here and be sure to check back next month for more tools to help keep youth sports a positive experience for our kids.

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of responsibility and integrity shown by people every day. We created Responsible Sports, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display good sportsmanship. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the course.

In an effort to benefit millions of youth athletes, parents and coaches, this article is among a series created exclusively for partners in the Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports program, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance

©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and Positive Coaching Alliance. All rights reserved. This material may not be distributed without express written permission. Any reproduction in whole or part by and individuals or organizations will be held liable for copyright infringement to the full extent of the law.


Wed, 02 Jul 2014 15:13:23 +0000

Nine U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association Athletes Nominated for ESPY Awards

PARK CITY, UT (June 30) – The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association will be the most represented sports organization at the 2014 ESPY Awards with nine Olympic athletes nominated in five categories. Sochi gold medalists Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO), David Wise (Reno, NV), Jamie Anderson (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) and Maddie Bowman (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) are each nominated for two awards with Shiffrin up for Best Female Athlete, the top women’s honor. Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT), Kaitlyn Farrington (Bellevue, ID), Joss Christensen (Park City, UT), Sage Kotsenburg (Park City, UT) and Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) also received nominations. Fans can submit their vote for the awards at http://espn.go.com/espys/2014/.

HIGHLIGHTS

Nine U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association athletes have been nominated for five categories at the 2014 ESPY Awards.
The USSA as a team has more athletes and is nominated in more categories than any other professional sports organization.
Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO), David Wise (Reno, NV), Jamie Anderson (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) and Maddie Bowman (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) are each nominated for two awards.
Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT), Kaitlyn Farrington (Bellevue, ID), Joss Christensen (Park City, UT), Sage Kotsenburg (Park City, UT) and Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) also received nominations.
The ESPY Awards are based on fan voting. Fans can submit their vote for the awards at http://espn.go.com/espys/2014/.
The ESPY Awards will take place on July 16th at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA. Coverage begins at 9 p.m. EDT on ESPN.

QUOTES

Tiger Shaw, President and CEO, U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association

It is an honor to have so many of our sports acknowledged in this year’s ESPY Awards. Each of these athletes is outstanding in their own right, but it was their performance as a team that led to our success in Sochi. We are proud to have these athletes representing the USSA alongside some of the greatest professional sport athletes and teams in the United States.

2014 ESPY AWARDS

Best Female Athlete/Best Female U.S. Olympic Athlete – Mikaela Shiffrin
Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO) went from a rising star to one of the best ski racers in American history in a matter of years. In 2013, she became the first U.S. slalom World Cup champion since Tamara McKinney in 1983-84. She backed it up in 2014 with title number two by notching five wins. Shiffrin became the youngest woman in U.S. history to win a World Championship and the youngest athlete in history (male or female) to win an Olympic slalom gold medal.

Best Male Action Sports Athlete/Best Male U.S. Olympic Athlete – David Wise
The 2014 season was another standout year for halfpipe skier David Wise (Reno, NV) with gold at the Winter X Games, gold at the FIS World Championships, silver at X Games Tignes and winning a sixth U.S. National Title. He then topped it off with an AFP halfpipe title. Wise continued his stellar performance at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, becoming the first-ever Olympic gold medalist in halfpipe skiing.

Best Female Action Sports Athlete/Best Female U.S. Olympic Athlete – Jamie Anderson
After earning a silver medal in slopestyle snowboarding at X Games Aspen, Jamie Anderson (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) came out on top at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, winning the gold medal in slopestyle snowboarding’s debut.

Best Female Action Sports Athlete/Best Female U.S. Olympic Athlete – Maddie Bowman
In 2014, halfpipe skier Maddie Bowman (S. Lake Tahoe, CA) earned four podium finishes at five of the Olympic qualification events (two of them were wins). Before heading off to Russia for the Games, Bowman bagged her second-straight X Games gold medal in Aspen. At the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games, she put down two unbeatable runs to take home the first-even gold medal for Olympic halfpipe skiing.

Best Female Action Sports Athlete – Kelly Clark
A three-time Olympic medalist, Kelly Clark (West Dover, VT) is a dominant force in the world of halfpipe snowboarding. After winning gold in 2002 and bronze in 2010, Clark easily qualified for her fourth-straight Olympic team and brought home a bronze medal from Sochi.

Best Male U.S. Olympic Athlete – Joss Christensen
Going into the 2014 Olympic Winter Games as an underdog, Joss Christensen (Park City, UT) threw down two amazing runs to win the first-ever gold medal for men’s Olympic slopestyle skiing. He led fellow Americans Gus Kenworthy and Nick Goepper in a podium sweep, marking only the third time in Olympic Winter Games history that the U.S. swept a medal event.

Best Male U.S. Olympic Athlete – Sage Kotsenburg
After a strong showing during the 2014 Olympic qualification process, Sage Kotsenburg (Park City, UT) walked away from Sochi with the first U.S. Olympic gold medal of the games and the first-ever Olympic gold medal in snowboarding slopestyle.

Best Male U.S. Olympic Athlete – Ted Ligety
Ted Ligety (Park City, UT) backed up his historic 2013 season with an Olympic gold medal and World Cup title in 2014, once again solidifying his place among the all-time greats. His Olympic gold medal from Sochi made Ligety the first man to win a giant slalom gold medal, which also marked him as the only man in U.S. history to win two Olympic gold medals in alpine skiing.

Best Female U.S. Olympic Athlete – Kaitlyn Farrington
After winning the final event of the Sprint U.S. Grand Prix and securing her spot on the 2014 Olympic team, Kaitlyn Farrington (Bellevue, ID) earned the halfpipe snowboarding gold medal in Sochi.

 


Fri, 27 Jun 2014 20:26:29 +0000