Upwind Academy

Online Courses About the Intersection of
Sports and Society

Denver Molly Brown  warms up at Pro Championships 2017. (Laurel Oldershaw)

Denver Molly Brown warms up at Pro Championships 2017. (Laurel Oldershaw)

It doesn't matter how hard you train on the field if you're not prepared for what happens off of it. These courses explores different issues in society using our common lens of ultimate fans. 

We are here to meet the demand for educational opportunities that link experiences in the sport to larger systems. Players and coaches are asking for more tools to build equitable programs and personally push back against racism, sexism, ableism, heterosexism, religious discrimination, transphobia, and other forms of oppression. We are offering several different ways to grow: online courses, in person trainings, and organizational consulting.

Information on Courses:

  • 4 weeks long
  • Taught online, over the Zoom platform, and also utilizing the Thinkific educational platform
  • Cost: $50-100 sliding scale (Scholarship available - just note in application)
    • $20 flat rate for students


Understanding Whiteness
Chip Chang

Understanding Whiteness is a 4 session course, designed like a college class and grounded in academic scholarship. It seeks to make whiteness visible. Whiteness exists as ‘normal,’ status quo, assumed. In order to dismantle it, we must first bring it into the light. What are the distinctions between whiteness and white people? How does whiteness exist in law and order, social institutions, economic value, and cultural practices?.

Mondays January 8, 15, 22, 29
5-6:30PM PST, 8-9:30PM EST

Coaching Female Athletes
Zara Cadoux and Simon Pollock

Coaching Female Athletes provides participants with the context for why and how female athletes receive coaching messages differently than male athletes. Importantly, we will push back on the notion that the way we coach male athletes is normative/right and the way we coach female athletes is ‘softer’/modified. First, the class will gain shared language on what sexism is, how socialization occurs, and what obstacles female athletes are facing before they even step onto the field. Using this foundation, we will explore how female athletes respond to coaches. Finally, each participant will make and share an action plan for how to integrate this new information into their coaching. Coaching Female Athletes is a course for coaches of any gender, however male coaches are highly encouraged to take the class.

Participants will be paired with a learning partner for the duration of this course. The purpose is to provide space to process the material we go over in class and to have a feedback partner while you craft your action plan. The 30 minute sessions will be structured by the instructors with guiding questions, but scheduled individually with your partner.

Wednesdays January 10, 17, 24, 31
5:00-6:00pm PST, 8:00-9:00pm EST
30 minutes outside of class per week is required with your learning partner


Talking About Trans*
Jenna Weiner

Talking About Trans* is a 4 week introductory course into what it means to be transgender, and how we talk about trans issues in society and in sports. First, we will seek to establish a common language through a discussion of the terms and standard questions that most often come up when talking about transgender topics. We will then read and discuss the firsthand experiences of transgender individuals, and try and understand what life is like as a trans person. Finally, we will address questions about trans people in sports, and what it means to be an ally to trans folks in your communities.

Tuesdays February 6, 13, 20, 27
5:00-6:30pm PST, 8:00-9:30pm EST

Building Gender Equity Leadership in Mixed Ultimate
Bert Abbott, Kellie Koester, Natalie Jamerson

Are you a leader, captain, or coach of a mixed ultimate team wanting to dig deeper into gender equity? Join Bert, Kellie, and Natalie as we unpack how sexism shows up in ultimate and what you can do about it. You'll learn and practice ways to bring equitable values, tools, and strategies back to your team. In our four-part series, you'll gain a foundation in gender and sexism; build skills to diagnose issues your team may encounter; improve your leadership and facilitation skills; and build a plan to enter your next season prepared. Open to mixed players of all levels who hold, or wish to hold, a leadership role on their team.

Sundays February 11, 20*, 25, March 4
5:00-6:30pm PST; 8:00-9:30pm EST

*The 20th is a Tuesday.


Navigating the Male-Dominated Space of Ultimate Coaching
Eileen Murray

In this course we will explore how to navigate the ultimate coaching space as a cis female. This space is male-dominated, especially at the more competitive levels of play, which presents obstacles and challenges for both novice and experienced coaches. We will discuss these obstacles and challenges and then move towards strategies for navigating and facilitating change in the space.

Thursdays March 8, 15, 22, 29
5:30-7:00 pm PST, 8:30-10:00 pm EST

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