This sounds like a good book — “Until It Hurts: America’s Obsession with Youth Sports,”Â by Mark Hyman( http://untilithurts.com/).
Hyman’s 14-year-old son came home with an arm super-sore from playing too muchÂ baseball, too hard. HymanÂ told the boy to get out there and pitch again — after all, it was the playoffs. Just a fewÂ years later, theÂ kid ended up inÂ surgery.Â Sports injury. For his part, the dad ended up with an epiphany: There is no reason to push our offspring to this point.
So he examines how sports went from something spontaeous and fun to something organized and grueling. Of course this entails figuring out how weÂ parents got so overinvolved. And he shares some shocking stats, too, like the fact thatÂ in 2003 alone, 3.5 million children under age 15 required medical treatment for sports injuries, “nearly half of which were the result of simple overuse. The quest to turn children into tomorrowâ€™s superstar athletes has often led adults to push them beyond physical and emotional limits.”Â
Free-RangeÂ Kids is pro kids sports, but not pro pro-kids sports, if you get my drift. We are not eager to make our kids into pros, or to enroll themÂ in so manyÂ coaching programs so many days a week that that they can outswim Michael Phelps,Â but have no idea how toÂ organize their own game of tag.
Sounds like this author came to the same conclusion, the hard way.Â — Lenore