Trophy Size


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Trophy Size

Postby Daisy » Mon Jul 01, 2013 8:49 pm

I've always been perplexed by the size of trophies that can be won in kids sports. In karate they are sometimes larger than the competitor. I just discovered that there is a similar mindset for piano competitions too. What is wrong with small commemorative medals? And when did this trend for enormous trophies start?
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby Marlow » Tue Jul 02, 2013 3:22 am

Daisy wrote:I've always been perplexed by the size of trophies that can be won in kids sports. In karate they are sometimes larger than the competitor. I just discovered that there is a similar mindset for piano competitions too. What is wrong with small commemorative medals? And when did this trend for enormous trophies start?

I actually thought the Trophy Era was coming to a close. I hardly see them any more for the big invitational track meets. Medals and ribbons are more than enough.
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby odelltrclan » Tue Jul 02, 2013 6:52 am

The problem not only seems to be trophy sizes, which, as you mentioned sometimes seem bigger than needed, but the number of trophies and awards. I remember as a youth seeing those that got awards and it motivated me to work hard so that I might get one. Then when my kids were participating in team sports, everyone got one. Evidently someone must have been worried about someone getting their feelings hurt. But does it really prepare them for life?
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby 26mi235 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:00 am

It also means that they do not appreciate their parents more hard-earned trophies. :lol: [not]

It did remind me of one (track, I think) gold medalist who kept is so low key that one time he came home and said that a gold medalist had the same name as his father.
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby Daisy » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:24 am

odelltrclan wrote:The problem not only seems to be trophy sizes, which, as you mentioned sometimes seem bigger than needed, but the number of trophies and awards.

That too, literally everyone gets a trophy just for showing up at our local karate tournaments. And even those are a foot tall.

Marlow wrote:I actually thought the Trophy Era was coming to a close. I hardly see them any more for the big invitational track meets. Medals and ribbons are more than enough.

I don't know too much about track meets in the US, it may be they have come to their senses. Or they were never as bad in the first place.

This is the kind of thing I'm talking about.
http://jwpictures.smugmug.com/Photograp ... %29-XL.jpg
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby odelltrclan » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:10 am

Daisy wrote:This is the kind of thing I'm talking about.
http://jwpictures.smugmug.com/Photograp ... %29-XL.jpg


And he might be one of the first kids off the bench, not a starter!
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby dj » Tue Jul 02, 2013 1:29 pm

Daisy wrote:This is the kind of thing I'm talking about.
http://jwpictures.smugmug.com/Photograp ... %29-XL.jpg


Each trophy as ugly as the rest. An amalgam of various elements with the result that not one is particularly distinctive except for its size.
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby gh » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:11 pm

I first ran into this phenomenon in the lobby of the Hyatt Hotel in Atlanta at the '96 (or maybe '95?) USATF Indoor.

We were sitting having an adult beverage (or seven) and some karate-clad kids streamed into the lobby, and one walked near us holding a thing that must have been 4-feet high. We congratulated him and he kinda blushed and noted that he hadn't done very well, but it was a "participation trophy."

There are two things at play here, neither of them good.

1. The mindset that all kids today are "winners." So you make sure everybody gets something.

2. Age-group participation, in all sports, it seems, tends to have a huge profit motive. So you charge (making numbers up) 75 bucks for an entry fee, and give every kid a 25-buck trophy. But when you're buying these trophies by the 100s, what to the kid looks like an expensive piece of hardware, maybe you've managed to cut your cost to $10 bucks. Lots of profit margin there.

Same concept of how you think you've gotten a great deal at the carnival, when you ring-toss a giant panda for your girlfriend, and it cost you "only" 5 bucks in tokens to get it. Not realizing it only cost them a buck.

As PT Barnum said, there's one born every minute....
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby Brian » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:26 pm

gh wrote:I first ran into this phenomenon in the lobby of the Hyatt Hotel in Atlanta at the '96 (or maybe '95?) USATF Indoor.

We were sitting having an adult beverage (or seven) and some karate-clad kids streamed into the lobby, and one walked near us holding a thing that must have been 4-feet high. We congratulated him and he kinda blushed and noted that he hadn't done very well, but it was a "participation trophy."

There are two things at play here, neither of them good.

1. The mindset that all kids today are "winners." So you make sure everybody gets something.


Ha!

Now you're talking like the elitist pig that *I'm* accused of being every time I open my mouth and point out to these people that true and lasting self-esteem with children *(and adults) comes from gaining competence at something, not just showing up (and paying an entry fee).


As far as your money tie-in, bingo! Marathons used to give finishing medals and you had to actually FINISH to get one. Event T-shirts came in the packet, but the medals had to be EARNED.

And, my friends, since these finishing medals actually MEANT accomplishment, people used to be extremely proud of having earned one.
.
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby 26mi235 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:09 pm

My first race, a marathon, you had to run under 3:00 to get the small medal that was the award, and close to 100 of the 500 probably did so (I think that they might have given Jackie Hensen a little bit bigger prize for her 2:43(?); now you can dat).
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby Daisy » Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:31 pm

gh wrote:We congratulated him and he kinda blushed and noted that he hadn't done very well, but it was a "participation trophy."

Austerity hits the trophy cabinet.
In June, an Oklahoma Little League canceled participation trophies because of a budget shortfall. A furious parent complained to a local reporter, “My children look forward to their trophy as much as playing the game.” That’s exactly the problem, says Jean Twenge, author of “Generation Me.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/25/opini ... r-you.html
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby Daisy » Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:24 am

26mi235 wrote:It did remind me of one (track, I think) gold medalist who kept is so low key that one time he came home and said that a gold medalist had the same name as his father.

That was Ovett's daughter.
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby Marlow » Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:57 am

In the same vein, I just learned to my utter horror, that my school has stopped all Physical Fitness Testing, because parents complained that their little fat slob baby boy had his feelings hurt when he couldn't do a pull-up.
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby no one » Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:02 am

just an fyi .... Hansen
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby TN1965 » Wed Sep 25, 2013 12:38 pm

Brian wrote:Marathons used to give finishing medals and you had to actually FINISH to get one. Event T-shirts came in the packet, but the medals had to be EARNED.


Of all the "finisher's" medals I have, the only one I cherish is the smallest with the simplest design. It is from BAA. (Okay, you could enter that race as a charity runner, but I know I was not one of them.) The size or the design of an award does not mean as much as what it represents.
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Re: Trophy Size

Postby 26mi235 » Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:02 pm

My first road race and almost my first race since a junior-varisty high school XC race seven years before was the Culver City Marathon. They gave medals to finishers under 3 hours; which was about 100+ of the 512 starters; I may have that around somewhere still.
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