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Is Football A Good Sport For Your Child?

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There is a lot of talk about football these days. Even though it remains America’s favorite pastime, all of that talk is not so good. Even though there are millions of us who love to watch our favorite players streak across the turf in their personalized football jerseys, we are becoming more and more aware of some of the hazards inherent in this sport. We see news shows featuring former football stars who are now suffering debilitating health issues stemming from injuries incurred on the field. We know that many of them are saying they would never encourage their own children to play the sport that made them famous and made them rich. And yet…..it is hard to deny the passion that many Americans feel for this age old sport and the enthusiasm which greets the beginning of each new season. It is also difficult to dismiss the advantages that this sport offers.
Thousands of athletes credit their football playing experiences with life lessons that they have found extremely valuable. They have learned the importance of working hard and giving it your best. They have learned to play as a team and to work together for something significant. They have experienced the highs of success and the bitterness of defeat, both of which are part of life’s experience. They have learned how much time and effort it takes to stay in peak physical condition.
Sadly, another thing learned by those who have played the game is that not everyone they play against or even play with demonstrates the kind of the emotional discipline that one would hope to have. There are those who care only about winning and who do not seem to care who gets hurt in the process. There are those who belittle and ridicule and intimidate. It is especially harmful when these actions come from their coaches as has been the case for many. In addition, recent stories about the bullying taking place even in professional locker rooms has dismayed millions of fans.
So, what is right for your child? One has to evaluate the various factors and decide if the benefits out weight the hazards. There is a lot of positive learning that can be associated with playing football but there is also a significant amount of negativity. Perhaps talking with your youth about those pros and cons is a good first step.