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Travel Sports Coaches - rant

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One works for good grades, they work at making marriages successful, they work at a career and they work to earn money.  What makes anyone think that playing games physical or electronic fits into the pattern?

 

I counseled a lot of people as a minister and found that the maturity of certain individuals seems to get arrested in adolescence.  As young adults they continue to play sports they were good at as personal recreation and sometimes do so to the detriment of the marriage.  These are also sometimes the source of their children's motivation to "follow in dad's footsteps" and repeat the cycle into future generations.

 

If such obsessions revolve around sports or electronics it might produce a nice source for other's entertainment and even a degree of financial satisfaction.  However that financial base has to be acquired quickly in life in that sport careers are very short lived relative to other careers.

 

Academics such as science, math, have the potential of benefiting society in ways more productive than entertainment.

 

I'm not averse to having our children play games, but not to the point of it becoming compulsive and all encompassingly competitive.

 

Scouting on the other hand helped develop skills I have used throughout my life, in my career, in my marriage, in my family, in my interests of life.  At age 65 I'm still using them on a daily basis and don't foresee ever not needing them.

 

I work a lot with youth in a number of different venues and the reason I use BSA as my basis is that it has the potential of doing more good for the kids than most others.  Church youth ministries is a close second.

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A few posts have directly or indirectly question the value of sports in society from a few perspectives - as a profession, from what it contributes society, as an entertainment outlet.  Sure those can be debated, but it veers from the what I think was the original question (or at least an early tangent) and that is the value of youth sports participation - not sports professions.  Just because a kid is unlikely to be a college or professional athlete doesn't mean there isn't much to be gained from participation as a youth.  The same argument could be said about tons of other things - odds are the kid won't be a renowned physicist so why take science every day in school or the kid can't draw a stick figure so what's the value in required art?

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Catholic Sunday school

 

But my kids attend on Wednesday!  I was raised protestant, and this practice of not holding it Sunday in conjunction with church service has always seemed weird to me....

 

But it's big business in our parish.  

We have a church school on site, but for kids like mine that attend government school or I suppose homeschoolers too, there are a lot....  they basically fill up the entire school on Wednesday late PM, and again later in the evening on Wednesday.... then they have another session or two on Sunday afternoon.

 

After seeing sports and Scouts, I don't see anything really character-based or even teamwork based being  taught to kids in sports (and my sons played soccer their elementary years, both were in middle school sports, and the oldest in high school sports).  I don't see much being taught besides how to play the sport (and yes, that does involve teamwork, but it's not led by the kids, it's led by adults shouting at them). 

I agree with you, except to say generally in observation from the outside that the "sporty people" tend to be better situated socially.  It could be a "grass is always greener" thing, but it seems that generally they have more friends, are more popular, etc...

 

I'm not a sporty person, and in fact I find that they can also be a bit offensive.  Many times I have been having a conversation about something with a person, only for that conversation to be completely hijacked by some sporty person approaching us & rambling on & on about the "game"..... some stats, predictions, etc....

Doesn't take long for my eyes to gloss over and then I either fall asleep or walk away.....

BUT I have tried hard to not model, or push my non-sportiness onto my son, but he's the same way..... I honestly think it's genetic as much as anything...

 

Someone mentioned band. In these parts, you miss a band fuction, you lose points on grade.

Yes, band has pushed to almost the same level.  My son is just starting so it's not hard core yet, but there are indications that it will be for sure!  

In fact I have had the thought that that I would be ok for my son to focus his energy more in band if he so chose to.... Since scouting can be such a mess, with all the adult interference and so on.... and from what I can tell none of his troop choices really approach the ideal that it could be.  And one troop option has such un-scoutlike scouters "at the helm" that I would discourage my son from going there....

So band is a potential option for personal growth, friendship, etc.... and I think most band kids are likely to be intelligent peers which ain't all bad....

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I picked up music in 6th grade in school.  Played tenor sax all the way through college.  Picked up piano in high school, still play for personal enjoyment.  Picked up guitar in college, still play at church.  Played violin for one year of college.  Played for 2 years in professional rock band on the weekends. Picked up fife and bugle late in life, but having fun playing both.   

 

In grade school played Little League 2 years.  Played basket ball 2 years in high school.  Played tennis one year, Got kicked off the golf team for not showing up for one practice.  still play a little golf here and there.  Spend my leisure time kayaking, canoeing, hiking biking and other "sports" that don't have their counter-parts in school sports but are all related to my scouting experience. 

 

While I might be a bit biased against school sports and it's obsession by the kids and their parents, I found that the glamour of the idea wears off very early in life.

 

Music and scouting seem to be a bit more life-long in their value as a pleasant pastime at least for me.. 

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Well, this takes the cake, in my opinion.  Wife told me last night about a friend's grandaugter who has started "Elite Competitive Travel Cheerleading".  She's 3 years old. 

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One of the down sides of all this hyper-competitive youth sports, is that kids are showing up with sports injuries that used to only show up in professional athletes. We have child athletes needing knee and elbow surgery. There is growing concern within the medical community about the detrimental health effects of overtraining and the rise of overuse injuries in youth sports. Basically, a lot of this stuff is unhealthy.

 

Rick, I would argue that injuries sustained by scouts on camping trips are just as severe, if not more so, than overuse injuries as well as injuries that they may encounter on the field.

 

Effective cross-training and responsible coaches and parents who do not drive their kids to the point at which they develop overuse injuries is the key to preventing them.

 

All of that said, and the greater issue though is that American youth are facing an epidemic of obesity. The level of physical conditioning, strength development and cardiovascular conditioning, that they gain through organized sports participation, whether participating at a recreational or travel level, is incredibly beneficial and necessary towards achieving optimal health.

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I'm 65 years old, weigh 160-165#'s (same as what I weighed in college) and don't do any "sports".  To attribute the avoidance of obesity and credit achieving optimal health to sports is a bogus argument.  I've done it without sports my whole life and I am used to a cubical environment 8 hours a day for many years.  I've never belonged to a health club either.  Currently I own a full acre of quite steep hillside yard and don't own a riding mower because it's too steep, but it gets mowed every week with a self-propelled push mower and all the clippings get collected for the garden mulching and composting.

 

I would attribute obesity and questionable health nutrition to TV/video games and fast food chicken tenders along with the occasional pizza and Mountain Dew.

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Well, this takes the cake, in my opinion.  Wife told me last night about a friend's grandaugter who has started "Elite Competitive Travel Cheerleading".  She's 3 years old. 

 

There's a kid who's childhood just went down the toilet.  I wonder if Child Protective Services should know about this?

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The vast majority of boys do not participate in the Boy Scouts, and they do just fine without it.  

 

Many of these boys choose sports over scouting.  Some choose science activities over scouting.  Others choose hobbies over scouting. 

 

Most boys choose something else over scouting.  We shouldn't be either surprised or offended when they do.

Edited by David CO

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The vast majority of boys do not participate in the Boy Scouts, and they do just fine without it.  

 

Many of these boys choose sports over scouting.  Some choose science activities over scouting.  Others choose hobbies over scouting. 

 

Most boys choose something else over scouting.  We shouldn't be either surprised or offended when they do.

 

As a youth, I quit scouting after 4 years of going nowhere with the only troop in town and went with other youth programs.  I'm still involved with scouts as an adult and don't regret my youthful decision.  I wouldn't blame a kid today for doing the same thing if the troop was run as poorly as mine was back in the day.

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Scouts and sports complement each other. I like them both and liked them both as a kid. But times have changed. Everyone knows horror stories like the kid that couldn't go to Philmont because he was going to miss 2 days of 3 weeks of band camp.

 

But maybe we aren't so innocent. Unfortunately sports and scouts are similar in one way, the drive to succeed (win or get Eagle) is watering down the program. I ask scouts why they're in scouts and most will bring up the fact that having Eagle is good for getting a job or getting into college. I usually want to puke right then. I've yet to hear a scout say "I hope to be a better person." I use their greed to encourage them to do things they normally wouldn't do.  If they're afraid to lead and I tell them lead or forget about Eagle then most of them will suck it up and try, usually with good results. In all honesty I'm not proud of it. I wish I was charismatic enough to convince a scout to try with no award, no threat, just a you can do it. But my talking about being a better person is just that, talk. Spread that over 60 kids and it's a lot of hot air. I guess I'm really no different than the coaches.

 

 

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If scouting was a "game" with a purpose and there's a ton of "adventure" as part of that game.  Why is it so hard to compete with other games?

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I ask scouts why they're in scouts and most will bring up the fact that having Eagle is good for getting a job or getting into college. I usually want to puke right then. 

I hold back the puke too, because it's a circumstantial benefit. Promoting it as gospel is effectively a lie. Some HR folks and college administrators will look on it highly, and others don't care. 

Edited by Sentinel947

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If scouting was a "game" with a purpose and there's a ton of "adventure" as part of that game.  Why is it so hard to compete with other games?

 

Sometimes it's due to grades. I know I know I keep mentioning band, but at the HS I went to, the different sports were considered PE, and they got a grade. During the season, they got out of PE class, with the intention that they did homework. that doesn't happen around here, but may elsewhere.

 

Sometimes parents put the pressure. Sometimes they are reliving their childhood.

 

Sometimes there is a hope of getting that scholarship and goign to college. Scouting doesn't have as many scholarships as sports.

 

Sometimes it's peer pressure.

 

Sometimes it's boredom. if you are in a troop that does the same thing over and over and over again, yeah it gets boring.

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My apologies @@Eagle94-A1 you took it seriously when I was steeping it in sarcasm.  

 

If Scouting isn't a game and fun and an adventure and fun and exciting and fun, then one might as well move on to school sports.

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