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70% of kids drop out of their sport before age 13 because of these 4 reasons:

Yes, you read it right, 70% of all kids quit organized sports by the age of 13, and the number one reason they cite is that it is not fun anymore. There can be a few reasons why kids drop out early:

1. Over zealous parents -
Parents are fueled by their talented kid to spend all their time and money on pursuing the kids sports career. They feel the more, the better, when in fact it’s that continual push that can at most times send their kid over the edge.
They also seem to panic when other kids the same age as theirs might be winning or doing better, so they make changes in coaches (-also known as 'coach hopping') and add on more tournaments.

2. Too much competition at a young age -
Burn out and over playing can occur at a very early age. Kid’s that compete too much and too early are in the 70% category of quitting a sport sooner than later.
Too much competition at a young age also means that they are not busy doing the things they should be doing more of, like athletic skill and technical development.

3. It’s not fun anymore -
The kid doesn’t enjoy playing anymore due to the loss of fun. They are always practicing or playing matches. Also, the pressure and more attention to simply ‘winning’ applied by coach an/or parent. The fun is simply drained out of it because of 'win at all cost' coaches and over-pressuring parents.
Kids also start to see their friends having more fun having more balance in their lives, playing other sports and going to friends houses, fun activities etc..
Always remember what the number 1 reason was why kids started to play a particular sport - because it’s FUN.

4. Too high expectations -
When a kid is extremely talented at a young age or showing great potential, a lot of parents will be constantly told how brilliant or great their kid is.
This is the mistake of society. Kids are put on pedestals way before they have earned it or should have.
Ridiculous as it may sound, but here in the United States, I have heard parents of kids under the age of 12 years talking to University and college coaches about getting their kid to go there!
And while I’m on that subject, parents pulling their kids out of school before 14, what are you thinking? Give your kids Balance and Education for as long as possible!
It's understandable that Sometimes arrangements in time scheduling need to be made, but pulling a kid from the classroom permanently at these ages does more harm than good.

The most important thing as a parent or coach, is to always make sure the kid is having FUN.
I would recommend that both the parent and coach provide the balance to this equation.
Parents, your role is simple: Just be there to lend unconditional love and support. Also, remember to let the coach, coach.
Have some integrity and patience, stop the coach hopping and thinking the grass is always greener when another kid does well.
Most of all - Let you kid decide if they still find it fun. It should and always be their choice.

Coaches, make sure the vital stages of athlete/player development are adhered too. But most important of all, help develop their love for the game as well as their life skills.

Enjoy the journey.

- Allistair McCaw

Champion Minded: Achieving Excellence in Sports and Life

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Inspiring words from a 7 year old tennis player today.

"I will do my best to make my best, better!"

-Ben Rudders

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