Youth Sports Programs: Is it Really Worth It?

th2DRCXTZELast week I was watching a program on cable television, I do not remember which station it was, however they were talking about organize sports and children. In particular young children. Like pre-school until middle school age children.

For years, well if I am honest, my entire life I have always believed and wholeheartedly supported youth organized sports. As something for children to do instead of sitting around having idle time. Go outside, run around, move a ball around in some fashion, bond with other children. Just have a great time. Shoot, I and my siblings all participated in organized sports from the time we were able to walk. From hockey, football, and soccer to volleyball, golf, and basketball. Even know I am still a great fan of each and every one of those sports activates.

However, with that being said. This program brought some things to light that I never considered. Such as when a child is made to do a very specific action like kick, a soccer ball or defend a goal.   In repeated form such as in practice or training. His or her limbs, muscles, and joints are not being allowed to develop as they were created to do. To me it seems that running, jumping, skipping, whatever is all the same, right? Who cares if there is a direct purpose such as scoring a goal or defending a basket? Right?

Wrong. If you believe what they say. After some extensive research of a group children over a period of like fifteen years, they discovered those that waited later on in life to join any type of organized sporting endeavor were better develop physically. That their range of motion, flexibility, and health of bones and joints was far greater than those that were put into organized sports early in their lives.

So much so that those that did not experience the world of youth sports, when they became young adults and started competing in the schools and community athletic program. Those children were able compete and compete well. They exceeded against their counterparts seven to three with the males and five to two with the female subjects.

Apparently, there is a reason for a child to have a natural knack and affinity to playing. You know good old fashion playing, that may include but not limited to climbing trees, skipping rope, running in circles. Whatever kids would normally do without any provoking. This allows their tendons to stretch, it develop their muscles, and it will even increase their range of flexibility. All from random acts of playing. This allows them physical being to become agile and strong that can later on withstand the stresses of organized sports.

This all got me to thinking about my own children.   Rather or not, they will be participating in the local youth athletic programs or if I should wait until they are older. After hearing some of my stories from my young days in sports, I know they are anxious to start. Nevertheless, I do not know now. I have no idea what to do in regards to my children playing on a sporting team when they are in preschool or kindergarten. However old they start playing kids around here.

I will tell you what this is something to consider. I will definitely give it some more thought.

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Let’s bring books back into these kids’ lives

th (24)I remember as a child enjoying story time and trips to the library. Hearing the encouragement to develop and perfect the imagination. To this day one of my most enjoyable moments are when I am enraptured and enraptured by a great plot and a twist of a great narrator.

Yes, it was because of this encouragement that had made me the person that I am. Without it, I do not know if I could maintain a blog. Writing and books go hand and hand like peanut butter and jelly. Reading my entire life has created a love and need for the written word, which has transcend onto this wonderfully delightful blog.

It has been determine that those children of the United States’ educational system are reading of course but it seems that it is less and less fiction as the time goes on. I mean children adore a great story, becoming wrap into the great world of the imagination. Think about how many teachers love introducing young children to their favorite writers and life lessons. I bet it is why many teachers have started teaching in the first place. What better way to get a bunch of kindergarteners to sit still and read. Without the aid of action, pack adventure.

There have been a researching panel that look into our educational system and took surveys from teachers. It was uncovered that with the raising of standards and expectation fictional stories have been shoved away to the side. Focusing on more non-fictional text to teach such things as reading, grammar, and vocabulary. For years fictional story was the go to text for teaching, I mean they literally dominated the educational arena. Lately this has not been true; their strength over the system is becoming less with each passing year.

My people, myself included, believe that stories are necessary in encouraging kids to read and learn. Especially in those early years of development. Curating themes such as war, love, fear, and faith. I have learn so many life lessons and interactions from the many stories that I have read.

One of my brother’s struggle with reading when he was younger. Therefore, my parents started writing and narrating books to him that centered on him and his life. They literally put him into the story. Along with me, my other siblings, and other family and friends. This did the trick, he learned to read with efficiently and later he became a novelist. He writes young adult fiction that is focused on young adult males. All because my parents decided to create a story that, he could not help but become engrossed in. In addition, it work greatly.

I cannot believe that they are taking away fiction stories and novels from our children education system. I agree that standards need to raise and we should teach our children to become great members of society. Our children are greatly lacking as a whole in the competition and competency in comparison to the global world. Nevertheless, must their imagination suffer? Novels and stories develop character and a moral compass. They teach us how to behave and what to expect. They also give us a break from our mundane lives.

Sports gave me the greatest lessons in my life

th7UGBY64EI have always been very active. As a kid, I have been in football, soccer, baseball, golf, tennis, and a summer of skateboarding. I really love sports. I think they provide a great learning platform for people especially young people.

Many lessons that I benefit to this day I have learned on a field or court. How to lose with grace and how great it feels to win. The benefit of working hard and giving a hundred percent. How to operate in as a team. It develop a completive edge in my life but it also taught me how to take pleasure in others triumphs. Sports have been a great learning tool for me in my life. More so than any other endeavors that I have been a part of, it is really is amazing.

It still surprise that on all the teams that I have been on and all the athletics that I have participated in my favorite team sport is not a team sport. Yes, you are part of a team and you compete as a team but it is not like some sports that require you to work with others in order to play. I mean it is not like football or soccer. My favorite team ever is my old cross-country team.

Yes a cross-country team. I realize that many people do not consider it to be really sporty. Due to the lack of physical contact and all. With that being said, it was some of the hardest and grueling workouts. I was able to be competitive with the opposing team, my fellow teammates and more importantly myself. Running cross-country prove to myself that I can overcome any obstacle. That I can be determine and enduring when times are good and when they are bad. It taught me to dig deep and always give that extra oomph.

What is crazy that I have never felt or learn such great things as I did running the miles, which at the time seem to last forever? Those that run understand that, this was especially so when first started running for sport and not just for fun. Let me tell you, those days, those first days, were horrible. It was backbreaking and extremely hard.   There was many times where I felt like quitting, just giving up. It is a wonder why I did not. I really do not know why I continued for so long, I never was a runner. Not really anyway.

I had so much fun on that team. We did have some much on and off the course.   When I look back some of my favorite high school moments involved those teammates of mine. The time we ran to our coach’s house to look at his wedding photos. On the other hand, when we teepee one of our school rival’s school. Another great memory when we all had Mary-Kay makeovers. Yes, it was such a fun time in my life.

The bonds that I made and life lessons that I learned will last me a lifetime. Whenever I feel as though I cannot get through something or that it is too hard to finish I reflect on those moments. It inspires me to keep going. That in no time I will be improving and winning. My determine spirit is directly related to those moments on my high school cross-country team.