Nobunari Oda: Harassment forced me to quit as Kansai University coach

Sylvia

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Originally posted in the Japanese news thread:
I wasn’t sure where to post this but Nobu Oda posted this on his twitter [on Sept. 29] and I’m really curious what’s going on.
Apparently he resigned from his coaching position at Kansai University rink?
Article in English: https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20191001/p2a/00m/0sp/012000c
 

nimi

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I've no idea how Japanese skating politics and university rinks work, so it would be interesting to hear about the larger cultural context where this all happened. I'm also not familiar with the term "moral harassment" that Nobu used in his statement, but I guess it's more or less synonymous with "power harassment" ("harassing behavior by someone in a position of authority toward his or her subordinates")

I tried to search Twitter for more info/commentary in English; didn't find much, but there was this:
What I was not fully aware of was that #NobunariOda held two positions at Kansai Uni. One as the GM of the University FS team and the other as a Kansai Uni’s affiliated coach for the “Oda team” which he lead with his mom. What is significant is that he resigned from both.
The GM job is more or less an honorary position so resigning from that does not seem like a big deal but it is the latter coaching job that involves much of actual coaching. For #NobunariOda who often expressed his love of coaching, leaving that job must have been unthinkable.

...and this:
During their coverage of #NobunariOda & Kansai University today, CBC TV #ゴゴスマ staff acknowledged someone close to Oda told them which coach at the university skating club allegedly harassed Oda & what that harassment entails, but was asked not to reveal anything at this time.
 

Tinami Amori

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I'm also not familiar with the term "moral harassment" that Nobu used in his statement, but I guess it's more or less synonymous with "power harassment" ("harassing behavior by someone in a position of authority toward his or her subordinates")
It probably means "mental harassment". The word he used (in another article) means "mental state, mental spirit, soul" etc. But perhaps japanese speakers can confirm or not.

 ブログによると、織田氏は7月に関大と話し合い、関大の調査結果を受けるために待ったが、9月になっても報告がなく、対応を不誠実に感じて辞任を決めたという。「事実とは違う内容が関大側から発表され、精神的に耐えられず、今回自分で説明することとなりました」と記した。
 

nimi

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Oh dear. It looks like it was Oda vs. Hamada. :eek:

Apparently Hamada just gave an interview where she denied harassing him and claimed there was just disagreement about things like club rules and coaching methods, or something along those lines. (As always, the machine translation is not very readable or reliable...)

To get a sense of timeline of the events, you can read this Twitter thread summarizing a 50 min TV report about the situation that aired yesterday. The same user also explains what "moral harassment" means:
To clarify about the difference between the moral harassment & bullying: moral harassment モラハラ(行為) is mainly verbal, while 嫌がらせ refers to actions taken specifically to upset or agitate another person.
 

Tinami Amori

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Oh dear. It looks like it was Oda vs. Hamada. :eek:

Apparently Hamada just gave an interview where she denied harassing him and claimed there was just disagreement about things like club rules and coaching methods, or something along those lines. (As always, the machine translation is not very readable or reliable...)

To get a sense of timeline of the events, you can read this Twitter thread summarizing a 50 min TV report about the situation that aired yesterday. The same user also explains what "moral harassment" means:

Thank you for the links. I found this interesting (some details). Seems (from that post) that Oda wanted to make sure that "education" at the University does not fall far behind "skating" (something i personally support). But Hamada objected.

[B][I]なんたらかんたら[/I][/B][I]‏ @[B]fsnanchara[/B][/I]
Oda wanted to enforce minimum grade requirements to enter competitions to get skaters to study more. Hamada didn’t think students should be penalized & worried practice time would be reduced.




Seems like Oda has some fans' support!
 

Madhatter

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Looks like Oda wanted to introduce school grades minimums for the competition-attending students so that the sport wouldn't be at the cost of their school work (apparently, like in other clubs) whereas Hamada was against it. That sounds like a very controversial policy change he was pushing for, and I imagine lots of coaches, students and parents would be against it. I was told that "moral/mental harassement" wouldn't be something extraordinary against someone rocking the boat in a Japanese institution.
 

Tinami Amori

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Those who are opposing Ono, are nuts! :lol: He is asking for a "minimum passing grade", not above it.

Objecting to a requirement of a minimum passing grade in a higher educational institution before practicing a hobby-sport, is same as objecting to parents in a restaurant requiring their children to eat dinner first before going off to play video-games..... :D

Or a standard situation - do your homework first, then go off to play ball....

What is this university's situation now? Students who are in a skating club are allowed to fail (not pass with a minimum grade), just because they skate? Are they all below "minimum educational standards"? This is crazy..
 

nimi

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Apparently Hamada just gave an interview where she denied harassing him and claimed there was just disagreement about things like club rules and coaching methods, or something along those lines. (As always, the machine translation is not very readable or reliable...)
Actual translation posted here:
https://twitter.com/BlueFlame4YUZU/status/1179363079194329088

Longer interview with Hamada will be published tomorrow by this same outlet, called Shuukan Bunshun, which seems to be a weekly tabloid. I don't know how strict (or relaxed) their journalistic standards are and how many grains of salt should be taken... Also, it's good to remember that Oda's management hasn't actually confirmed who the alleged harasser is, and Oda and Hamada weren't the only coaches working at that rink, so we basically know very little at this point.
 

Madhatter

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Actual translation posted here:
https://twitter.com/BlueFlame4YUZU/status/1179363079194329088

Longer interview with Hamada will be published tomorrow by this same outlet, called Shuukan Bunshun, which seems to be a weekly tabloid. I don't know how strict (or relaxed) their journalistic standards are and how many grains of salt should be taken... Also, it's good to remember that Oda's management hasn't actually confirmed who the alleged harasser is, and Oda and Hamada weren't the only coaches working at that rink, so we basically know very little at this point.
The publisher of Shuukan Bunshun is actually very prestigious according to wikipedia. I believe I read that Shuukan Bunshun is pretty reliable, they've got receipts for what they claim, and if I remember correctly, they were the ones who broke the story of Kozuka's celebrity divorce (and they had very literal receipts of his infidelity).
 

Tinami Amori

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Longer interview with Hamada will be published tomorrow by this same outlet, called Shuukan Bunshun, which seems to be a weekly tabloid.
If there is a chance, can you please post a link or the interview. (now that the issue can be related to "education vs. sport" i am very interested).
 

Sylvia

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The 週刊文春 print article is p136-7 in the October 10 issue. It is quite short & similar to the online version, but with longer quotes from the school "insider" & #MieHamada, & a different tone from Hamada. Just as in the online article, #NobunariOda's side acknowledged there was a difference of opinion regarding club rules & academics between him & Hamada, but refused to comment on the moral harassment allegations & if Hamada is the accused harasser. Hamada also said Oda is the face of Kansai University & she would like him to come back.
 

Gris

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According to Shincho magazine, #NobunariOda answered their questions and he identified his harasser as Mie Hamada, a well known coach of elite level skaters who coached at the same rink as he did.

:eek:
 

denise3lz

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I think the cause of problem is too many influential coaches and strong skaters in one ice rink.

Oda faction: led by Noriko Oda mother of Nobunari.

Nagamitsu faction: led by Utako Nagamitsu known for long time coach for Daisuke Takahashi.
She went abroad at least twice this year for Moa Iwano (JGP Poland) and Sena Miyake (IGP Italy).

Hamada faction: led by Mie Hamada coach of Rika Kihira, Satoko Miyahara and Yuna Shiraiwa,
also known as former coach of 2003 Jr World and 2004 4CC champion Yukina Ota,
ISU technical specialist Noriyuki Kanzaki.


2 new ice rink is expect to open in Kinki area (Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe), so these friction will be ease.
 

ostile17

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I think the cause of problem is too many influential coaches and strong skaters in one ice rink.

Oda faction: led by Noriko Oda mother of Nobunari.

Nagamitsu faction: led by Utako Nagamitsu known for long time coach for Daisuke Takahashi.
She went abroad at least twice this year for Moa Iwano (JGP Poland) and Sena Miyake (IGP Italy).

Hamada faction: led by Mie Hamada coach of Rika Kihira, Satoko Miyahara and Yuna Shiraiwa,
also known as former coach of 2003 Jr World and 2004 4CC champion Yukina Ota,
ISU technical specialist Noriyuki Kanzaki.


2 new ice rink is expect to open in Kinki area (Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe), so these friction will be ease.

Wasn't the one near KIX, the Kanku Ice Arena, supposed to be ready by 2019?
I know Takahashi (and Miyahara at some point) endorsed the project and he was an advisor.
 

CaliSteve

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Actual translation posted here:
https://twitter.com/BlueFlame4YUZU/status/1179363079194329088

Longer interview with Hamada will be published tomorrow by this same outlet, called Shuukan Bunshun, which seems to be a weekly tabloid. I don't know how strict (or relaxed) their journalistic standards are and how many grains of salt should be taken... Also, it's good to remember that Oda's management hasn't actually confirmed who the alleged harasser is, and Oda and Hamada weren't the only coaches working at that rink, so we basically know very little at this point.

I think that's the tabloid that first wrote about the situation.
 

rosewood

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My rough translation of other excerpts from the same magazine (Shincho magazine #41 'October 30th' issue)

One of Hamada's students: Coach Hamada is so enthusiastic about skating. She is a very tough coach. I was sometimes terrified by her coaching. One day someone was not able to jump well. Coach Hamada yelled at the skater. "Hey!""Why can't you do jumps?" (こら!何で跳べないんだ!) Her shouting voice shook the whole rink. On another day when someone who was going through her puberty lost sharpness in skating, Coach Hamada roared at the skater "You fatso!"(このデブ!)Weight control is important in this sport, so I don't say I can't understand her, that said.....

Someone involved in Kansai University: She was sometimes overbearing enough to kick the rink's boards for controlling her students. Once she grasped hair of her student who couldn't do jumps well and threw the student on the ice.(ジャンプが上手く跳べない子の髪をつかんでリンクに叩きつけたこともある)Due to this type of 'coaching' there was a child(children) who quit training in Kansai Uni's ice rink.

____

I sorta think this is not a concerning issue between Oda and Hamada but an issue between Hamada and her students in and out of Kansai Uni.
 
Last edited:

Meoima

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My rough translation of other excerpts from the same magazine (Shincho magazine #41 'October 30th' issue)

One of Hamada's students: Coach Hamada is so enthusiastic about skating. She is a very tough coach. I was sometimes terrified by her coaching. One day someone was not able to jump well. Coach Hamada yelled at the skater. "Hey!""Why can't you do jumps?" (こら!何で跳べないんだ!) Her shouting voice shook the whole rink. On another day when someone who was going through her puberty lost sharpness in skating, Coach Hamada roared at the skater "You fatso!"(このデブ!)Weight control is important in this sport, so I don't say I can't understand her, that said.....

Someone involved in Kansai University: She was sometimes overbearing enough to kick the rink's boards for controlling her students. Once she grasped hair of her student who couldn't do jumps well and threw the student on the ice.(ジャンプが上手く跳べない子の髪をつかんでリンクに叩きつけたこともある)Due to this type of 'coaching' there was a child(children) who quit training in Kansai Uni's ice rink.

____

I sorta think this is not a concerning issue between Oda and Hamada but an issue between Hamada and her students in and out of Kansai Uni.
This is scary...
 

wickedwitch

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My rough translation of other excerpts from the same magazine (Shincho magazine #41 'October 30th' issue)

One of Hamada's students: Coach Hamada is so enthusiastic about skating. She is a very tough coach. I was sometimes terrified by her coaching. One day someone was not able to jump well. Coach Hamada yelled at the skater. "Hey!""Why can't you do jumps?" (こら!何で跳べないんだ!) Her shouting voice shook the whole rink. On another day when someone who was going through her puberty lost sharpness in skating, Coach Hamada roared at the skater "You fatso!"(このデブ!)Weight control is important in this sport, so I don't say I can't understand her, that said.....

Someone involved in Kansai University: She was sometimes overbearing enough to kick the rink's boards for controlling her students. Once she grasped hair of her student who couldn't do jumps well and threw the student on the ice.(ジャンプが上手く跳べない子の髪をつかんでリンクに叩きつけたこともある)Due to this type of 'coaching' there was a child(children) who quit training in Kansai Uni's ice rink.

____

I sorta think this is not a concerning issue between Oda and Hamada but an issue between Hamada and her students in and out of Kansai Uni.
If true, this is terrifying. Also, I assume (and hope) that the second example would be illegal in Japan.
 

MAXSwagg

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I think he should’ve stayed, gotten fired, and then he definitely would be able to sue! She needs to learn this behavior is not okay.
 

Colonel Green

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There have been rumours for a while that Hamada was not nearly as nice as her public appearances would suggest.
 

starrynight

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I'm always surprised when people are surprised about this kind of behaviour. It is, unfortunately, just about everywhere in this sport, the only difference is people are starting to speak up about it a little more now.

It reminds me of a crazy psychopathic boss I had. Sometimes the trick of getting away with things is to be so outrageous in your behaviour that no one on the outside can believe what you do could possibly be true.

And people only talk out when they have enough leverage to do so. Both the whistleblower has to be popular and the coach lost their popularity for anyone to listen. Just look at the way Kiira Korpi is being shredded and discredited.
 

Erin

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I'm always surprised when people are surprised about this kind of behaviour. It is, unfortunately, just about everywhere in this sport, the only difference is people are starting to speak up about it a little more now.

Having seen a lot of this kind of stuff in gymnastics (where it is sadly even more rampant), it’s not that I’m surprised it’s going on, but when I hear situation like this, it’s often more of a reaction that “I hoped she/he was one of the good ones.” And I guess I always remain hopeful that there are good, non-abusive coaches out there.

Much as I love the type of skating she produces and would hate to see the training of her skaters interrupted, I hope that the Japanese fed takes action regarding these statements. I’m not sure what the likelihood of that is though. If it’s anything like feds in other countries, I think very low unfortunately.
 

wickedwitch

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Having seen a lot of this kind of stuff in gymnastics (where it is sadly even more rampant), it’s not that I’m surprised it’s going on, but when I hear situation like this, it’s often more of a reaction that “I hoped she/he was one of the good ones.” And I guess I always remain hopeful that there are good, non-abusive coaches out there.
That's how I feel.

It's interesting how physically appearances can affect people's thought, including my own. Eteri looks strict, so people are more willing to believe allegations that she is abusive in some way. Hamada doesn't, so people are more likely to be dismissive of such rumors.
 

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