Resilience: A Not-So-Secret Weapon for Success

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The amazing, inspiring Olympians we all watched this past summer were picture-perfect examples of why grit is so important. Toughing it out through difficult times, through doubt, through resistance, is often the only way really big things can ever get accompished.

That "big thing" might be winning a gold medal. Or it might be implementing a groundbreaking new way to support student health.

Many of this issue's articles, in some way, touch on the idea of being resilient and persevering to reach a goal.

Canadian Olympic volunteer and Jiu-Jitsu champ Chris Nepomuceno met Brazilian Judoka and medal-winner Rafaela Silva, a woman who's broken barriers to reach her goal, and endured more than her share of hardship along the way.

Our Teacher to Teacher Q&A this issues tackles the challenge of getting school administrators on board with QDPE. Competing priorities for those at the helm mean the road isn't always smooth, but the upside makes all that effort both worthwhile and necessary.

The Community Spotlight page focuses on teacher and swim coach Bob Hayes, who makes a habit of setting very tough goals for himself, and inspires his students to follow suit. (In fact, Olympian Penny Oleksiak is a former student.)

Our peer-review article explores whether Ontario's secondary school teachers have enough training and support to deliver healthy eating and weight-related initaitives to their students.

Also in this issue: Three groups of young leaders, from PHE Canada’s Student Leadership Conference last year, demonstrated a good amount of grit, persevering over the course of year to develop and implement community action projects in their neighbourhoods. One improved accessibility to activity programs for at-risk youth, one brought awarness to gender stereotypes in physical activities, and another worked to raise awarness about the need for gender-neutral washrooms on a university campus.

And finally, in Teachers' Tools for Mental Health, coordinators unveil a pilot project (at, based on the premise that a mentally healthy and engaged classroom starts with a teacher's own mental health.

With fall, the pace of work and of life tends to pick up steam, and with that quicker pace comes more challenges, stresses and obstacles. Our Olympic athletes are a great reminder that all that effort, persistence and resilience can lead to some really good things.

We hope you enjoy the issue!