GOOD

LGBTQ Youth Athletes Should ​‘Play Proud’

Long after the World Cup, coaches and mentors can help make soccer more inclusive.

Whether you call it soccer, football, or “the beautiful game,” it’s a global phenomenon.

Played in stadiums, in streets, and in dusty fields all over the world, the game will seize the international spotlight later in June when Russia hosts the 2018 FIFA World Cup in 11 cities — from Sochi to St. Petersburg.

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Sports

This All-Girl Hockey Team In Harlem Is Changing The Game

The program combines education, life-skills, and true grit.

Cross 110th Street on a frigid Friday night, when bitter winds blowing off the surface of Harlem Meer have driven most New Yorkers indoors, and you might think you had Central Park to yourself. But Lasker Rink, the sturdy double skating rink located just inside the park, is rocking.

In one rink, tiny figure skaters inch in the direction of their instructor, tiptoeing almost on their toe picks. In the hockey rink, players are perfecting their snapshots, whipping pucks against the boards. They shoot and pass, practicing classic hockey stops that sheer ice off the surface. Fast and accurate, they skate in practice jerseys with Ice Hockey in Harlem stitched on the front. Only when you spot long hair pulled back under some of their helmets do you realize you’re watching teenage girls. Lady Harlem is in the house.

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Sports

The Sole Of The Bronx

A red-hot community running club is getting local residents off their sofas and into their sneakers by using Bronx history as bait.

The steep staircase in Highbridge, Bronx, looks easy enough to climb. Unless you have to do it every day to get home or 119 steps suddenly appear at mile four of an already uphill run. Then, the top of this iconic step street, connecting Jerome and Anderson Avenues at what feels like a 90-degree angle, looks painfully far away. For New Yorkers in Bronx Sole, the Tuesday night open running club that combines community exercise with a curated exploration of the borough’s beauty, grit, and riveting history, the staircase is a reminder that the city’s verticality isn’t limited to its skyscrapers.

The Bronx often elicits fierce pride from those who were born and raised there and sometimes confusion from people who weren’t. Unique among New York City’s five boroughs, the Bronx is the only one attached to the mainland. At 42 square miles, geographically it’s the size of Paris. The third most densely populated county in the U.S., its 1.5 million residents speak dozens of languages and hail from all seven continents (if, as one beloved wag says, you count the penguins in the Bronx Zoo). For all its congestion, open space makes up a quarter of the borough. Pelham Bay Park, the city’s largest, is three times the size of Central Park. The Bronx is known as the birthplace of hip-hop. It’s home to top-tier universities and museums and alive with vibrant immigrant communities and championship sports teams.

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Sports