The Discussion Of Hazing Of Young Athletes

Deviance is the state of diverging from usual or acceptable standards, especially in social behaviour. In another terms, it is also about going against the social norms.

The activity that I have chosen today to examine and would consider to be a deviant act would be hazing. Hazing is the initiation ceremonies, ragging or deposition and other activities involving harassment, abuse or humiliation used as a way of initiating a person into a group including a new fraternity, team or club.

The case study that I am going to include today would be the hazing of the young athlete in a sports setting. This act is considered as a negative deviance because it displays under- conform act by breaking a norm of discriminating young athletes. Moreover, hazing in sport has burst into prominence in the past few years due to the widely publicized deaths, injuries, and humiliations suffered at the hands of athletic teammates. This is whereby, senior athletes in the sport would initiate an event “welcoming” the young athletes/ newly joins by asking them to do certain acts, so as to be accepted into the team/ clubs. For example, of this act include; being thrown in the mud, eating disgusting things, being tied up to a pole and the seniors beating them. Thus, the long-term effects of hazing on these young athletes/ adults might result them having physical, mental, emotional instability, loss sense of control and empowerment, which could eventually, in the long run lead them to be inflicting self-harm or even death.

Therefore, from a conflict perspective, whom view the society as a system largely dominated by a social inequalities and social conflict. Some may think that hazing of the young athletes is unfair and discriminating towards the individuals. As for the individuals have to go through a painful process before being accepted into the team/ clubs. Thus, it would lead to parents not willing to allow their children to try out for the sport, afraid of their children being a victim of hazing. Thus, this creates a bad impression on the sport. Furthermore, people will develop the perception that getting into sports team would mean that the athletes would have to be first bullied in order to be accepted in.

In conclusion, to address this issue, the sports association needs to help stop this deviance act and practice egalitarianism (a social system that supports the belief that all people are equal and should have the same rights and opportunities). Moreover, to stop this act, they would have to reduce the power differential between members, so that one individual does not feel superior to another. Furthermore, to amend the traditions and to develop an anti- hazing policy in the sport, to prevent re- occurrence of this issue.


  1. Hazing in Youth Sports. (2013, November 25). Retrieved from 
01 August 2022
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