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Old 03-11-2008, 02:28 PM  
jAZ jAZ is offline
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At what age do you want your go from "for fun" sports to "win/lose" sports?

I'm watching George Carlin's latest HBO show and he's talking about the "slef esteem movement" and how kids never hear the phrase "you lost!" anymore.

It got me thinking about my 15 month old boy. One of the things I've read about, and noticed in him... is that at this age... kids like to read the same books (and parts of books) over and over again, because they know what word is coming up next. And they like the feeling of getting the word right.

It's also why they will say "done!" as soon as their favorite pages is done (the one where they get to say "duck!" or whatever).

The same thought process seems to apply to sports. At a young age, you are having them play, not to learn the value of competition or winning and losing, but rather just to learn the sport, get exercise, and have fun. At that age, everyone gets to play.

At what age do you think kids should switch from KumByYa-sports to competitive-sports?
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:31 PM   #2
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:32 PM   #3
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I never played any sport that was "for fun". There's always a winner and a loser and it's better to be the winner. I wont sign my future kid up for any sports leagues that don't keep score, don't have standings or playoffs and don't crown a champion. What's the point, otherwise?
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaKCMan AP View Post
I never played any sport that was "for fun". There's always a winner and a loser and it's better to be the winner. I wont sign my future kid up for any sports leagues that don't keep score, don't have standings or playoffs and don't crown a champion. What's the point, otherwise?
I'm not sure that this involves leagues that don't keep score necessarily.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:35 PM   #5
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I remember starting to play football in either 3rd or 4th grade. I'm sure it was full score keeping. Before that it was soccer and we had league champions and softball... which basically involved standing in the outfield and throwing my glove in the air. Not sure what the rest of the team was doing. I think both softball and soccer were 1st and 2nd grade.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:37 PM   #6
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I played every sport in my highschool (that were available to me); football, basketball, track/golf (same time). I would loved to have played other ones besides those, but I always played them for fun. I was a really good athlete and probably could have been better but I knew I was never going to play in college or anything like that, so I just went out and had fun. Some of my teammates were ridiculous at times over the amount of anguish they would feel when we lost (or more accurately; when they werent the star). I would say let you kids do whatever they want. I was intelligent and gifted enough to get a 4.0 GPA and be an all state athlete, all the while taking my grades as something that is serious and sports as what they are, games. Just dont make them feel bad if they lose, or lose the game, or arent good at sports, that shit is ridiculous and I saw enough of that bullshit growing up; dads yelling at sons because they struck out or missed the 3 at the end of a game... who gives a shit! Its 6th grade baseball, smile, eat hotdogs, hang with friends, and try your hardest... thats the best advice I can think of.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:37 PM   #7
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Even if leagues don't keep score the kids do.

2nd grade seems to be the grade it switches.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bowener View Post
Just dont make them feel bad if they lose, or lose the game, or arent good at sports, that shit is rediculous and I saw enough of that bullshit growing up; dads yelling at sons because they struck out or missed the 3 at the end of a game... who gives a shit! Its 6th grade baseball, smile, eat hotdogs, hang with friends, and try your hardest... thats the best advice I can think of.
I agree with this completely. However, I still would put my child in a competitive league that, like life, has winners and losers.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:41 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by DaKCMan AP View Post
I agree with this completely. However, I still would put my child in a competitive league that, like life, has winners and losers.
I understand where you are coming from, but what confused me at the end is the life part. How do you win or lose at life? And if you infact do win or lose at life, shouldnt you be setting your child up for the best way to 'win' at life; ie. good grades, less sports, more time learning math, science, language skills that will allow them to domiante in the real world. Less than 1% of athletes go on to be pros, and you can tell early on who that could possibly be. If your child doesnt seem like a MJ by at 12, then it is probably accurate to assume they are just going to be like the rest of us, good but not great.

Sorry. I probably come off as a dick to you, but honestly I am not being hostile toward you. I am just big on good educations. I was hampered coming from a small, poor, rural missouri HS that couldnt afford to give us good classes that prepared us well for college. It took me about a year to get used to it all.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by DaKCMan AP View Post
I wont sign my future kid up for any sports leagues that don't keep score, don't have standings or playoffs and don't crown a champion. What's the point, otherwise?
Fun, social interaction, learning the basics of the game?
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:44 PM   #11
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Even if leagues don't keep score the kids do.

2nd grade seems to be the grade it switches.
I agree. Even if the league does not, kids still always keep track on their own and ask their parents who won at the end of the game. You find this in kids even in Kindergarten. Parents and the league may not want to emphasize winning and losing, but the kids know what the point of playing is.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:44 PM   #12
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There's a difference between encouraging winning and yelling at a child for not being good enough. IMO, the children that are taught that it's just as good to come in last as it is to come in first place are the kids that grow up to become assistant manager at Burger King and live at home until they're 45, because that's "okay."
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bowener View Post
I understand where you are coming from, but what confused me at the end is the life part. How do you win or lose at life? And if you infact do win or lose at life, shouldnt you be setting your child up for the best way to 'win' at life; ie. good grades, less sports, more time learning math, science, language skills that will allow them to domiante in the real world. Less than 1% of athletes go on to be pros, and you can tell early on who that could possibly be. If your child doesnt seem like a MJ by at 12, then it is probably accurate to assume they are just going to be like the rest of us, good but not great.

Sorry. I probably come off as a dick to you, but honestly I am not being hostile toward you. I am just big on good educations. I was hampered coming from a small, poor, rural missouri HS that couldnt afford to give us good classes that prepared us well for college. It took me about a year to get used to it all.
I think you're looking too much into the "winning" or "losing" at life. I meant it as in all types of situations there are winners and losers and I wouldn't want to, even from the start, give the false perception that everything in the world is kumbaya and everyone is a winner. Whether it be a scholarship, a science fair, interviewing for a job, playing the stock market, bidding on a contract there are winners and losers in all aspects of life and the sooner one realizes that they develop self-motivation and leave behind the sense of entitlement.

Believe me, education is one of the most important things in my life and one of which I place the ultimate value. When I say I want my child in a competitive league that in no way means I expect him or her to be an exceptional athlete. I wasn't, and I'm not, the most athletic guy in the world and I never expected to get anywhere based upon athletic ability. That doesn't mean I wasn't more competitive than anyone else out there or that I should have dropped sports to focus solely on music, literature, etc.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chiefnj2 View Post
Fun, social interaction, learning the basics of the game?
You can learn all of that while still having a winning and losing team.
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Old 03-11-2008, 02:47 PM   #15
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Considering the way recreational "for fun" leagues are all being trumped by "select"/AAU type leagues, I don't think kids have the slightest idea what "for fun" means anymore.

And I'm not sure a parent gets to make that call anyway. For years the kid's highlight will be the treat ticket at the end of the ballgame, then one day he'll decide winning is why he plays.
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