In the increasingly competitive world of kids’ sports, elite teams such as travel or club teams can place extreme demands on both a family’s time and money. With extensive travel for tournaments and competitions and an expected year-round commitment, these teams can leave little time for other sports, relaxation or family. On top of the stress on the family’s time together, an elite sports team can cost into four figures annually. Faced with this choice, more and more parents are reacting against the pressure put on their kids and deciding that other things come first.
Athletics can be an amazingly positive force in the lives of young ones, keeping them active and improving their self-esteem and academic achievement. For many, such teams promise a chance to eventually get a leg up in the college process with the hope that a scholarship will guarantee a bright future. However, in reality, “only about 2% of high-school athletes are awarded college athletic scholarships,” making such dreams a long shot.
Although many students play because they love the sport, pressure at an early age can cause them to burn out relatively young or develop an injury from overuse. Parents should watch out：“If your child is no longer having fun playing a sport, never practices independently, or feigns illness or injuries at game or practice times.” This may be an indication that they need a break.
To read more about the athletic pressure on young kids, read the Wall Street Journal article here.
Photo by Heavenhated of Flickr.