A few weeks ago, I had a conversation with a hockey parent who said:
“When I was a kid we never had special training, I don’t see why my kid needs it.”
Oh, how times have changed!
When this man was a child, sports were played in the backyard or on a frozen pond. Kids learned how to make rules and resolve conflicts without parental interference. Teams were chosen “fairly” and sometimes you were picked first, sometimes last, or, in my case, not at all! (Don’t worry, I become a great cheerleader.)
Fast forward 30-40 years where parent-tot soccer is a real thing. We pay for lessons to ensure our little athlete has a shot at the high school team or, better yet, a college scholarship. Our kids specialize in one or two sports early on. That means they train their bodies to respond to one type of stimulus. It also means more time practicing that sport and less time just “playing” (rigorous practice schedules don’t leave much time to ride bikes, climb trees, or play tag).
As kids get older, their bodies develop imbalances based on the sports they play. This is where specialized training really becomes a game-changer. Throwing athletes need different training than jumping athletes. Pushing athletes need different training than sprinters. On top of all that, we need to consider growth rates, training schedules, nutrition, stress levels, and sleep habits, because—let’s face it—they’re still kids!
Burnout is a much bigger factor in today’s youth sports than ever. With competitive travel leagues beginning as early as age five, kids often feel over-trained and overwhelmed before they even reach the high school level. It’s important to recognize signs of fatigue, stress, injury, and over-training in young athletes—asking the right questions and being flexible enough to change the workout is a must.
That’s what our GLAC Performance Coaches are trained to do. Our goal is to make it fun for your child to be a better, healthier and more confident athlete. We’ve been hard at work developing programs that will help your child make an impact in their sport.
When it comes to our athletes, we invest in lessons, leagues, travel, uniforms, and more—why not invest in proper training? In doing so, you can help your child avoid burnout and injury, and develop healthy habits for life.
Fall Sports Performance Training starts October 3rd. Contact Regan Slocum for more information!