Thanks to Janelle Prater-Burnette for sharing the great team photo above.

Baseball mom, Jenifer Armstrong shared the article below. And I couldn’t agree with it more. Our kids learn soooo much more from playing travel sports than hits, strikes and the infield fly rule. The life lessons, blessings and benefits are too numerous to count. 

fields wiley
After a tough game that eliminated his team from the state championship, the opposing coach called all the kids out to the mound where he told all of them how proud he was of their sportsmanship and level of effort they put forth in the game. He then led both teams and coaching staffs in a prayer. I wish I knew the guy’s name. He was one of the classiest coaches I have encountered.—Lisa Fields Wiley


The other night someone asked me “Why do you pay so much money for your boys to play sports?” Well I have a confession to make, I don’t pay for sports.

So if I am not paying for sports, what am I paying for? I pay for those moments when my boys become so tired they want to quit but don’t. I pay for those days when my boys come home from school and are “too tired” to go to practice but go anyway. I pay for my boys to learn to take care of their body. I pay for my boys to learn to work with others and to be good team mates. I pay for my boys to learn to deal with disappointment, when they don’t get that position they hoped for, but still have to work hard at the position that they have been asked to play. I pay for my boys learn to make and accomplish goals. I pay for my boys to learn that it takes hours and hours and hours and hours of hard work and practice to create something beautiful, and that success does not happen overnight. I pay for my boys to learn time management. I pay for the opportunity my boys have and will have to make life-long friendships.

I could go on but to be short, I don’t pay for sports, I pay for the opportunities that sports provide my boys to develop attributes that will serve them well throughout their lives and give them the opportunity to bless the lives of others. From what I have seen so far, I think it is a great investment!

I am sure that other parents get similar questions. “Why do you pay for dance?” “Why do you pay for softball?” “Why do you pay for band?” “Why do you pay for cheer?”…. I just think it is important to realize what we are really paying for.

You see just a few weeks ago, Caleb was asked to tell what the greatest lesson colbybaseball had taught him was, and his answer was this…”how to face failure!” That is such a profound statement! Everyday, we each face failures in our own lives. How do we handle those failures? Do we hang our heads and just give up? Or do we decide to get up and make a change? Do we truly live life like a 3-2 count? Are you the pitcher in this instance who is determined to get the strike out? Or the batter determined to get on base? Either way, one word remains…determined.

Determination is the key to any success.

Colby was asked to play a position in soccer this year that he had never played, and quite honestly, didn’t really want to play. But he did, and he did it well. He could have complained and whined. But instead, he decided that it was what his team needed. So he worked and learned to be the best he could be at that position for himself and his team. What a life lesson!

How often as adults are we asked to do something outside of our comfort zone?

jenifer 2Kids are still kids, and sometimes they want to quit. They want to whine. They want to blame others for things that they themselves have done.

Heck, adults still do that! But as parents, we must see the big picture for our children when they can’t see it. Quitting and complaining will not get you where you want to go. Hard work, determination and attitude will. I’m thankful for the lessons sports have taught my boys. But most importantly, I’m thankful that God blessed my boys with the ability to be able to play the sports they love. You see, so many children around us are not able due to health and other reasons. So I have always told my boys to play hard for themselves, for the ones who cannot… and for God to get the glory.

May you live life today like a 3-2 count!

32 count

One Blessed Mom



Angela Weight

Founder and publisher of Travel Ball Parents.com, Angela Weight is still a little shocked to be running one of the most popular youth sports parenting sites on the web. Click the ABOUT US tab to read her story.

5 thoughts on “WHY I DON’T PAY FOR SPORTS

  • January 26, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    This is such a good article and I hope everyone reads it and now can also understand as a coach for travel baseball for so many years why we do what we do to help get these kids to understand all of the things talked about in this article. I have had such a rewarding 15 years helping and watching kids grow. My all time favorite saying is “its ok to fail” that’s how we learn what we want in life and the work it takes. f.a.i.l really means: First Attempt In Learning.
    Chad Kannon

  • January 22, 2016 at 3:13 pm

    Great Article, I agree with just about everything it states. As a parent of two older children, both who went through the full swing of travel sports from the age of 5 through college, and as a past NCAA division 2 athlete and current high school level (JV) coach, I had, and have a front row seat to the whole process on a daily basis. While all of the benefits stated in this article are dead on, there are a few bumps in this long and grinding at times road that should be mentioned. I have personally wittiness over the last 17 years a major shift taking place in youth sports that is somewhat concerning. The combination of this shift and helicopter parenting is beginning to create many issues in our kids that don,t show up until the later teen years and it has become alarming. The combination of the amount of time spent on the field and in individual training has become ridiculous. Our kids are not being taught enough real life lessons and are lacking in many social skills necessary to compete in a non-sports world, and make no mistake about it 95% of all of these kids will be living life day to day in a scenario that has absolutely nothing to do with sports. I understand all of the valuable lessons learned on the field and cherish their value to the kids but we need to begin to make some time to allow them to be individuals and kids. If I could change a few things in my personal situation, I would have allowed for time for my kids to get a part time job at a much younger age. If we are all being fair, and honest with ourselves the schedules of our kids in the new sports age is so intense that as the kids get to around 16 years of age its not at all possible for them to hold down any real job. I see hundreds of kids a year, all playing sports, all believing that it is going to get their parents and themselves a financial reward of a scholarship to college. They practice with their travel team who’s season is now basically 365 days a year, than they schedule individual training and than add to that the high School season and its daily routine and than back to the 365 day travel and individual training again. This schedule has gotten insane. Its insane for both the kids and the parents and truth be told it splits families up from being together if you have more than one child involved at a time. While the benefits of this agenda for the kids is great, they lose out a bit on being kids, learning non sports related life lessons and more importantly the ideal of going to a job for a few hours a week and earning money in the real world and learning social skills off the field of play. Regardless of how many skills they are learning on the field winning, losing, team work, work ethic, etc… they are still skills as they relate to sports, not real life. While I agree there is a certain amount of cross-over with these skills to real life scenarios, its not exactly the same. Being honest with ourselves when your kid is tired after school its still a whole different thing to have the fortitude to get up and go to practice to play a game than it is to have the responsibility to get up and go to stock shelves in a grocery store, or cut lawns. But the later is a more important life lesson. Again, this article is great and I agree with all of it and love sports and the life of sports as a parent to death. I wouldn’t have traded it for the world. I just think we need to dial it back a little bit and not buy in to all of the hype so much. There are great lessons to be learned from a life of sports but we need to balance it with some time to just be kids and allow our kids to see another side of life off the field. Believe me I have seen my share of kids over the years at the high school level really go south quickly when they realize the life they had been living on the field is coming to an end and they don’t have any understanding of what they are supposed to do next. Give them some time to see first hand what comes next along the way. Only than can they put to use all of the great skills they have learned through sports and have the ability to balance the two worlds.
    Sean recently posted…WHY I DON’T PAY FOR SPORTSMy Profile

  • January 22, 2016 at 2:42 pm

    Thank you for this and reminding us all how to be better people not just baseball players.

  • January 22, 2016 at 6:33 am

    Sooo many times i have heard this, and. Can relate too this in so many understanding points it warms my heart to know others are thinking similar and maybe just maybe its our chance to turn our kids back to old family values. That we as parents can instill some family values back into our children Today!!!!! Thank you one of those wasted money parents.


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