I guess that technically my title is “Soccer Mom”, but I’m not too thrilled with this title. To me a Soccer Mom denotes a mindless, crazy, mini-van driving, over protective, woman with too much time on her hands. While I may be several of those things at any given moment, my experience and passion for sports goes much deeper (see below).
A side note, our dog is even named “Rudy”~ if you don’t know the significance of this name then you have missed a really great sports story. (click for a trailer to the movie).
IF you must know why this is important to me … (read on)
When I think about why sports is so important to me, my response is that sports saved me. A bit melodramatic, I agree, but really, I have learned more about life, made the deepest friendships, felt the ultimate sense of belonging, and some seasons shared in a fair bit of success. When I stand up to speak at a conference or in a board room, I know that I can thank sports for my confidence.
As a child, sports gave me a place to make friends each time we moved to a new town. I learned the value of hard work and the importance of conditioning. I still “train” for big events, even if they are not athletic. The thrill of victory and the agony of breaking an ankle senior year of high school, life always has something to teach you. The fall I broke my ankle, I wrote my first article on “Benchwarmers” for the school newspaper (let’s just say if it were written today, it may have gone viral).
My sports experience is not limited to playing, I have coached, refereed, umpired, chaired recreation committees, captained, played in college, worked as a trainer, played as an adult, and watched sports for my entire life. The last decade I have spent navigating the world of youth sports,with not only my own children, but also as a coach. Often I am dismayed by what I see from coaches, parents and league administrators. This phenomenon is not limited to my small town and my family or to any preschool, elite, recreation or varsity teams.
Throughout my life I have had the privilege of working with youth from cradle to college. I have spent years speaking at state and national levels on the good, the bad and the ugly of youth sports. I have read countless books and articles on youth in sports and used my degree in counseling psychology to help others better understand child development, motivation and self-esteem. My goal for this page is to post the best, most inspirational stories, quotes, books and videos that I can find on youth sports. It is always easier to look for the bad in something; it takes more time to find things to celebrate. This is a blog that celebrates the good of youth sports (though the blog may contain the occasional “ugly” depending on my mood). I could fill volumes with the ugly that I have witnessed, but I choose to look for those things that make me smile, inspire me to be better and that will ultimately will help me raise children that love the game. I hope you feel the same.
If you made it this far then you deserve a “kick”, just kidding. You must be a sports enthusiast at heart. Please join my Facebook page for links to this blog as well as more of the quick and funny!