Why All Kids Can Be Multi-Sport Athletes
"I played everything, I played lacrosse, baseball, hockey, soccer, track and field. I was a big believer that you played hockey in the winter and when the season was over, you hung up your skates and played something else."
- Wayne Gretzky
I read this comment in a group discussion:
“The thought that multi sports makes you a better athlete is a little flawed. They aren’t better athletes because they play multiple sports, they can play multiple sports because they are better athletes.”
- Youth Sports Parent
I don’t think your child has to be a good athlete to participate in multiple sports. For youth and adolescent kids, sports should be focused on improving physical fitness, motivation, for building confidence, and most of all to have fun..
Here are reasons why your child should participate in multiple sports:
1. Participating in multiple sports allows a child to develop strength and agility in different parts of their body.
2. Skills are transferable from sport to sport, like quickness, running, and jumping.
3. Learn different types of focus, each sport teaches different types of focus and resiliency. For example, baseball teaches long term attention and quick action, while swimming teaches pace and endurance.
4. Creativity, multi sports help kids to develop a higher sports IQ. Rather than being rigid to the movements and skills learned in one sport, multi sport athletes can draw and apply skills and tactics from all sports. For example, a basketball player can transfer skills to play lacrosse.
5. Burnout, kids are less likely to experience burnout because they have a variety of sports to play and things to do.
6. Builds character, multi sport athletes are use to being coached by different coaches and build relationships with different teammates. As a result, they learn to communicate and interact with a variety of people and personalities.
7. Grit, as kids learn to compete in one sport, that confidence, discipline, and competitive mindset are transferable to other sports, and in all facets of life.
At the heart of it, sports participation allows kids to develop friendships, be active, and have fun.