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are travel sports out of control

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Are Travel Sports Out of Control?Travel teams are super competitive and let you focus on your favorite sport. But some people say that’s exactly why they’re a bad idea.

What is a travel team in sports?

And there is no guarantee of playing time (unlike in recreational leagues where all kids will usually get a chance to play regardless of ability). Travel teams are also sometimes called elite teams, select teams, club teams, or tournament teams. Young athletes can reach a point where they are bored with rec league play.

Is there a try out for travel teams?

There is almost always a try-out or audition process to join the team. And there is no guarantee of playing time (unlike in recreational leagues where all kids will usually get a chance to play regardless of ability). Travel teams are also sometimes called elite teams, select teams, club teams, or tournament teams.

How has the travel team industry affected youth sports?

On the other side there are still many companies who have seen how the travel team industry has effected youth sports. “Almost 45 percent of children ages 6 to 12 played a team sport regularly in 2008,” according to Aspen data. “Now only about 37 percent of children do.”

Why is it so expensive to play on travel teams?

The cost of playing on travel teams have skyrocketed. “Sports in America have separated into sport-haves and have-nots,” said Tom Farrey (@TomFarrey), executive director of Aspen’s Sports Society program. “All that matters is if kids come from a family that has resources. If you don’t have money, it’s hard to play.”

Why do kids quit sports?

Some experts say that too much pressure is put on young athletes. On some travel teams, 6-year-olds play for national championships. Websites rank athletes in elementary school. And last October, a college gave a scholarship to a football player who was only in sixth grade. Some kids can’t keep up. Or they just want to play for fun. These kids get frustrated. They often quit sports.

How old was Samantha Burkett when she fell in love with soccer?

Samantha Burkett was 4 years old when she fell in love with soccer. She loved the teamwork and the strategy. She loved the running and the feel of the ball on her foot. “It made me so happy to play,” she says. “Soccer had my heart forever.”. Before long, the sport also had most of her time.

How much does Samantha’s dad spend on soccer?

Samantha’s dad spent about $8,000 a year on Samantha’s soccer costs. Many families can’t pay for their kids to join travel teams. So those kids often don’t play at all. A generation ago, being an athlete meant playing on school teams: soccer in the fall, basketball in the winter, and tennis in the spring.

What percentage of high school athletes love their sport?

One study found that 90 percent of elite high school athletes love their sport. Samantha was one of them. She didn’t mind practices, and when she wasn’t on the field, she worked on her skills at home. But a high-level commitment like that comes at a cost, which includes giving up other sports and activities.

How many kids get injured in sports each year?

Some kids feel too much pressure. So they quit. Others put their bodies through too much. They get hurt. More than 3.5 million young athletes get injured each year .

How many kids get injured playing sports?

After a while, the game you love can turn into a . Some kids feel too much pressure and quit. Others hurt themselves by playing too hard. More than 3.5 million young athletes get injured each year.

Why is it important to play more than one sport?

And while you’re at it, try different sports. Playing more than one reduces your risk of injury. It also increases the chance of having fun. In the end, is there really any other reason to play?

Why is youth sports declining?

The decline of youth sports is a real issue in America, and it is caused by the popularity and growth of elite travel teams. This has caused a new divide in local sports. “There’s been this presumption that youth sports are exploding in this country and private clubs and trainers will pick up the slack,” Farrey said. “For kids with resources, they have. But families without resources are getting left behind.” The business side of travel sports continues to grow, but companies and athletes are coming together to save the youth sports that they love. It will be interesting to see where youth sports will be in 5 years.

What is the Pros Cave?

Curtis created “Pros Cave” a program that raises money and awareness to youth sports. He uses social media to interview fellow players and auction off memorabilia to raise money that is then donated to sportsmatter.org. Curtis has now added personal letters to youth athletes to his program and has launched www.ProsCave.com.

What is the biggest push to stop the decline of youth sports?

The biggest push to stop the decline of youth sports comes from Project Play 2020. This is coordinated by the Aspen Institute’s Project Play, and includes stakeholders such as MLB, the NBA, U.S. Olympic Committee, NBC Sports Group, and Nike. Their goal is to come together to “reverse trends driven largely by a shift away from volunteer …

What is Project Play?

Project Play has two main goals for their first year: improve training for youth coaches and encourage children to continue playing multiple sports instead of specializing in one. Project Play is hoping that they will make an impact since they are the first coordinated effort in attempting to stop the decline of youth sports.

How much is the youth sports industry worth?

According to WinterGreen Research the U.S. youth-sports industry is now a $15.3 billion market. This includes the travel teams, specialized private coaching, and the organizations that run the travel teams. Many media companies and businesses are now capitalizing on this industry.

What companies are streaming youth games?

Companies are now streaming youth games, creating apps that can market young athletes and schedule their games. Dicks Sporting Goods and NBC have both recently bought companies that build online scheduling, track athletes, and promote them on social media.

When was the Macy Marin article published?

Published on October 18, 2017 by Macy Marin. The increasing popularity in elite youth travel teams have youth sports facing a decline. Imagine your child wants to play baseball, do you place them in their local recreational league, with volunteer coaches, or on a travel team with trained coaches?

What is the Long-Term Athletic Development Model?

Burnout is just one of the reasons that Bigelow, who’s spent the last two decades as a youth sports advocate, is a devout proponent of the Long-Term Athletic Development model (LTAD). Developed by Canadian sport science expert Istvan Balyi, LTAD preaches that when it comes to all team sports and even certain individual ones (tennis, track, cycling), generalizing at the younger ages — playing a variety of different sports in low-pressure environments — is the healthiest and best way for kids to grow. According to Balyi, early specialization should be strictly reserved for sports like figure skating, gymnastics and diving, anomalous disciplines in which lower center of gravity, shorter levers (legs and trunk), and lower muscle mass — not to mention a lack of fear — are advantageous. "In the early specialization sports," says Balyi, "if you don’t start young, you don’t stand a chance." Not so for the late-specialization sports. Despite not playing basketball until the ninth grade, Bigelow still managed to make it to the NBA. Not surprisingly, he maintains that prepubescent athletic ability is meaningless when it comes to postpubescent athletic success. "Your little soccer star might have played 3,000 soccer games by the time he’s 10 years old, but he’s still only 4-foot-9 and 85 pounds." In other words, he contends, puberty is the great equalizer, and there’s no telling what will happen to kids (or more importantly, to their peers) once the hormones kick in.

What age did Tyler start playing soccer?

At the age of 2, his mother enrolled him in a toddler soccer class that was affiliated with one of the better clubs in Manhattan, because that’s what mothers of 2-year-olds in New York City do. At the age of 3, Tyler started playing for real — or at least as real as soccer in Pull-Ups can be.

What does Tyler Ward like to do?

His goal in life is to become a professional soccer player . His favorite player is the famous Spanish midfielder, Xavi. He spends what little free time he has in the basement gym of his family’s Upper West Side apartment perfecting his juggling skills (his personal best is 1,288 touches without the ball hitting the ground). He’s crazy for the game and he’ll tell you straight to your face. "As far back as I can remember, I’ve always loved playing soccer."

What is Tyler Ward’s life like?

TYLER WARD’S ENTIRE life can be summed up in one word: soccer. At the age of 2, his mother enrolled him in a toddler soccer class that was affiliated with one of the better clubs in Manhattan, because that’s what mothers of 2-year-olds in New York City do. At the age of 3, Tyler started playing for real — or at least as real as soccer in Pull-Ups can be. Two years later, having already shown some proclivity for the beautiful game, young Tyler was identified as one of the 15 best players on the 6-and-under team (U6, for the unindoctrinated) and was selected for his club’s pre-travel program. Yes, there really is such a thing.

How old was Tiger Woods when he won the Masters?

In 1997, at the tender age of 21, Tiger Woods collected a $486,000 paycheck when he won the Masters, his first major golf championship. The following week, TV screens across the country showed the same video clip over and over: Two-year-old Tiger whacking a golf ball in front of Mike Douglas and Bob Hope. In a country where college scholarships can amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars and pro contracts are worth hundreds of millions, parents started doing the math. "That right there," says Bigelow, "was the death knell of LTAD in America."

Where did Chase Bly play lacrosse?

The million-dollar answer is, it depends. In the case of Chase Bly, you could make a very strong case for the child as expert. A 19-year-old high school senior from Sewickley, Pa. (12 miles north of Pittsburgh), Chase played baseball and soccer during his elementary school years. Around the time he got to middle school, he caught the lacrosse bug, and during the summer after eighth grade, he attended a lacrosse camp at Princeton, where he noticed that all the best players were wearing the same green-and-white shorts. That’s because they all played for Greene Turtle, a club team based out of Baltimore, the unofficial lacrosse capital of the world. "They were all crazy-good," Chase says, "and I wanted to be at that elite level." He wanted it so badly that the following winter, without consulting his parents, he emailed Greene Turtle’s coach and arranged for a tryout in Baltimore (a Pittsburgh-area coach who Chase had been training with drove him down). Lo and behold, the kid from Western Pa. ended up making the team.

When does soccer start weeding out kids?

But according to U.S. Youth Soccer, which invests precious resources into an Olympic Development Program that starts weeding kids out as early as age 11, there’s value in early tactical development, especially in a sport where size isn’t everything.

Why do young athletes need a travel team?

A travel team may be the best way for them to learn new skills, meet expert coaches, progress in their sport, and have fun in the process. Kids need to be challenged so they can grow.

What is a youth travel team?

A travel team is a youth sports team that plays at an elite level. These teams travel, often long distances and out of state, to games, competitions, …

How can traveling help kids?

1 And, of course, traveling can be a great way for both families and teams to bond through shared experiences, like meals or just swimming in the hotel pool. Kids are exposed to new cities and sometimes get a chance to play tourist.

Does Verywell Family use peer reviewed sources?

Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources , including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

Is it hard to join a travel team?

Joining a travel team is definitely demanding, and not just for your kid. There are significant costs (thousands of dollars per season is common 2 ). There is a big time commitment: practices; games; travel; and parent volunteer hours all add up. It’s also likely that kids will need to miss school for team commitments. And with more practice and play time, the risk of injury and burnout goes up, too. 3

Is travel team play good for kids?

Travel team play isn’t right for every child, but it can be a lot of fun if you make the right match between child, sport, and team. The goal should always be for kids to have fun, be active, and keep learning, no matter what sport or team they choose. Pros and Cons of Competition for Kids.

Can a coach make or break a child’s experience with a team or sport?

In many instances, the coaching staff can make or break a child’s experience with a team or sport. Look for positive, fair-minded coaching. Toughness is OK (even necessary for some kids and teams), but hostility isn’t.

Coach from the Stands Connor

This dad (or mom) is yelling out plays and advice to his kid during the game. First of all, Connor, you are not the coach. Let him do his job. Second of all, your kid is so distracted trying to hear what you say that he is totally going to miss the ball. That, or he is so humiliated he’ll miss it.

Bug the Coach Barbara

Face it, lady, your kid is not the best player on the team. She should get her chance to participate, but she does not always have to be on the field. Not even if you say so. There are other kids who deserve time out there. And sometimes the coach actually has a plan, and your little superstar just is not the one perfect for it.

Intimidate the Opposition Olivia

This mom (or dad) is downright scary. She takes a step further than coaching from the stands and sets her sights on scaring off the other team. Yep, she is here to intimidate kids playing on the other team.

Complain About Teammates Tim

This dude cannot believe that the defense didn’t play well. Of course, his son, who played offense, was not at fault. Nope–little Timmy Junior never misses. It was that other kid who is bringing the team down. So Tim goes and complains to the coach.

How old was Samantha Burkett when she fell in love with soccer?

Samantha Burkett was 4 years old when she fell in love with soccer. She loved the teamwork and the strategy. She loved the running and the feel of the ball on her foot. “It made me so happy to play,” says Samantha, who lives in Illinois. “Soccer had my heart forever.”.

Why did Samantha quit soccer?

It was injury. She suffered three head injuries in a little over a year. She had to give up soccer to protect her health.

Why did Samantha turn down invitations to hang out?

These teams are often run like training grounds for professional athletes, demanding an extremely high level of commitment. Indeed, Samantha says every week she turned down invitations from friends to hang out. Her reason was always the same: “Sorry, I have soccer.”

How many athletes get hurt every year?

More than 3.5 million young athletes get hurt every year. According to a 2018 study**, kids who specialize in one sport are 81 percent more likely to experience an overuse injury. These types of injuries come from doing the same activity over and over—and kids are especially vulnerable because their bodies are still growing. (Doctors say playing more than one sport reduces the risk of these types of injuries .)

Do kids need to watch more than one sport?

Experts say kids should try more than one sport and play at the level that makes them happy. That might mean playing on a school team. Or it might simply mean joining a pickup game at the park.

Is Samantha’s experience unique?

In many ways, Samantha’s experience is not unique. An increasing number of kids are joining travel teams that promise rigorous training, exciting competition, and elite status. Yet more than half of kids who play team sports will quit before high school.