Effects of an integrated Olympic education program on adolescent athlete’s values and sport behavior
Saulius Šukys and Daiva Majauskienė, (Lithuanian Sports University), 2014, 42(5), 811–822

The title of this paper caught my attention, as I competed as an athlete from a young age and dreamed of being chosen for the Olympic Games. My Olympic Games memories date from 1952, when Yvette Williams, at Helsinki, Finland, dramatically won a gold medal for New Zealand in the long jump. However, I had not heard of Olympism as a philosophy of life combining the qualities of mind, body, and will, as a balanced whole.

In the context of Olympism, the objective of Olympic education is the development of positive values in sport participation, with students becoming familiar with the ideals and values of the Olympic movement, which they are encouraged to practice in everyday activities. The integration of an Olympic education program as a values and prosocial behavior education technology in schools in Lithuania since 2002 has been an inspired decision. 

The authors focused on adolescents involved in sport at Lithuanian schools, of which half implemented the Olympic education program and half did not. They measured the students’ Olympic values, which revealed their attitudes toward Olympic sport, and prosocial and antisocial behavior in sport. The expected results indicated the positive impact of the program and reflected a stated goal in the program to help develop a peaceful society. The students from schools where the program was implemented exhibited the human values and social virtues of Olympism and Olympic values associated with individual pursuit of excellence more prominently that did those attending schools where there was no such program.The students in Lithuanian schools should be set up for life with the influence of the Olympic education program on their personal values and behavior not only in sport activity, but also in everyday life. Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympic movement, would be very proud of the success of the Olympic education program!

Katharine Samuel | Copyeditor
Social Behavior and Personality: an international journal