Parents nowadays put a lot of pressure on their children to become great at sports. They will do anything so that their kid could play at the highest level. These parents start making their children go to sports camps and coaches from a very young age. Children from the age of 7-8 are already expected to play at high stake tournaments. Parents are focusing too much on making their young kids more competitive. They emphasize too much on winning. And I’m afraid that’s not right. Firstly because sports are meant to be played for fun, at least at this age. Secondly, when parents put too much pressure on their children to win, the losses are quite depressing.
This is the reason why sports’ popularity has lowered in today’s generation. Children nowadays do not seem to enjoy sports as much now. This is because people expect too much from them when they go out to play. If parents don’t allow their children to have fun playing sports, they will never enjoy it. The competitiveness of today’s sports has killed the joy that the older generation used to have.
According to a study, the best reason why children play sports is that they want to “have fun.” However, by the time they are 13 years old, 70% of the children drop out of sports teams or clubs. The reason is that they just “stopped having fun.”
So how did this happen? What is the reason behind kids sports becoming too competitive and kids losing interest in sports? And how do we overcome this issue?
There are a lot of parents who believe that their children can make it to college sports and thus get overly involved with their child’s sports activities. Only 2% of school athletes receive scholarships; however, the amount of parents who believe their child can get the scholarship is way too high. This makes the competition among the children quite high. Some even believe that this is just adults competing against other adults through their children.
A lot of parents have this thought that if you work hard enough, nothing is impossible. They believe that if they provide the right resources for their children and if they work hard enough, they can compete at the highest level. This is a misconception. In a lot of cases, some people never make it, no matter how hard they work. This pressurizing of children for their own gain is something that has created this situation of children losing their interest in sports.
A lot of the time, coaches are the reason why many kids stop playing their favorite sports. The coaches are way too serious and expect the children to perform well every single time. The coaches try to mimic the professional ones and fail to understand that the players are just some children wanting to have fun. Their misunderstanding of how a child’s mind runs causes many children to leave sports because they did not get along with the coach.
Many other reasons include how our culture gives winning in sports a lot of emphases and how overworked sometimes children get.
This problem can be solved on an individual level quite easily, actually. For parents, they have to treat their children’s sports just like how would they treat them normally. Try not to get overly involved with your child and let them have some fun on their own. Be positive and support what your child has fun doing. The solution for coaches is also quite similar. Coaches should have some perspective and should know that these are just some children trying to have fun. Coaches must be positive with every child. This would make a huge difference.