AFL coach Alastair Clarkson gave an impressive interview ahead of the 2021 season in which he describes the pitfalls players must avoid in the summer.
The legendary Hawthorn trainer spoke openly about his "Four Ps" motto, which covers drugs, sex, gambling, and alcohol – and how an excess usually leads to problems.
Clarkson spoke to former Carlton and GWS player Dylan Buckley on the latter's podcast when the subject of landmines was discussed.
"Inside our club – and now outside our club – we talk about the four Ps, which is the piss, the boat, the penis and the powder," Clarkson told Dyl and Friends.
"And where there is broadly an argument in anyone's life, one of these four is going to get you.
“One of them is illegal, but three of them are legal. So for sure the legal ones, well, you can have a boat and you can go out and have a drink and you can spend time with a woman or a male partner.
"But if you do these things excessively and stupidly, you will get into a little bit of trouble."
Alastair Clarkson (right) gave a breathtaking interview about the "landmines" that players have sometimes hit. Photo credit: Getty
Clarkson is considered one of the greatest coaches of modern times, having won four premierships with Hawthorn since 2008.
The 52-year-old emphasized the importance of having open discussions with his players so that they are forced to think about the consequences before problems arise.
"We're dealing with young men, they won't always get it right," he said.
"We know that mistakes have to be made – and many do them, including I. I have done a lot on my journey.
"But we are now trying to pass on our wisdom about the mistakes we made and hope that we can prepare our boys as best we can to avoid some of them."
"There are pitfalls everywhere, but overall it has helped us a lot.
Hawthorn trainer Alastair Clarkson. Photo credit: Getty
“We also have a little fun with it. It also normalizes it a little, because what these young guys go through … whatever has been violated has probably been violated in my family. So I just try to pass on the wisdom of our ways as best I can. "
Clarkson also opened up about the loss of his older brother in an alcohol accident nearly 37 years ago.
Andrew Clarkson died in a single vehicle incident in regional Victoria in 1984. He had been drinking at a party earlier that night and Clarkson was in boarding school at the time.
"That really impressed the family," said Clarkson.
"I don't want to refuse because it had such a big impact on our family, but you learn to make sense of these things and just understand that this is all part of the journey.
Hawthorn striker Jonathon Patton has been charged with inappropriate sexual behavior on social media. Photo credit: Getty
"There are hurdles to overcome everywhere and that's probably what I can bring, especially at my age as a coach. It's that empathy as a father figure for many of these players now that you understand the pitfalls of life, not just the pitfalls by Footy.
"The pitfalls of Footy are even more significant because of the public nature of the game, the expectation, the popularity of the game. It's a very difficult game." That puts young men under additional pressure. How can you relieve this pressure?
"We already talked about the four Ps. How do I point out to these kids that there are landmines all over the Christmas break, guys, be careful how you navigate them. When you do things, I'm here for my arm." to lay you, sometimes a kick in the ass and a slap over the ear hole, but sometimes a caring cuddle to say, listen, it will be fine, we will get through this. "
Hawthorn striker Jon Patton is currently under investigation by the AFL on allegations that he sent unsolicited lewd photos to several women.
The 27-year-old has been hospitalized for mental health issues after the story emerged and was expelled from the club pending investigation.
The Hawks open their 2021 season against Essendon on March 20th.