Archive for the ‘Youth Sport’ Category

Is sport a privilege or a right?!

Thursday, October 31st, 2013

That is the question. Is sport a privilege or a right? What decision needs to be made to best reach out to the community and present the best option for participating in community sports? How many families have similar situations to Sondra’s?

First of all, the decision of requiring a participation fee to join the community sports’ teams could be damaging to the group of population that can’t afford to pay that fee. Therefore, this decision that needs to be made comes down to the question: What is the most efficient decision and how does this best serve the whole community equally?

The relevant facts of the case are the fact that community sports cost to join, some people believe that “sport is a privilege, not a right,” kids should have equal opportunity to join sport teams, and they should not be stopped by money. One article on mentioned that:

Playing a sport can help prevent drug and alcohol abuse, and children participating in sports are less likely to start smoking, and if they do smoke, are more likely to quit.

There are some important people that have a big stake in the outcome: single parent with a family and poor families. There are definitely many options that can be taken into consideration about how to deal with these people that aren’t able to join community sport teams because of cost.

Which option best serves the community as a whole, not just some members?

All children should have equal opportunity to be on a community sports team, whether or not they decide to, that is their choice. Some ideas that could be considered are: lowering costs of participation fees or advertising more about having businesses and companies sponsor kids financially. In order to do this, people need to be educated and how they can promote community sport involvement. By offering members of the community the opportunity to sponsor some of the teams, they can help where single parent families are able to let their kids participate without money being a huge issue. The article on also mentioned that:

Sports allow children to assume leadership roles, handle conflicts, and manage their time.

Sport is a privilege and a right; however, kids should have the equal opportunity to be able to participate in sports if they so desire! Therefore, I think they should allow Sondra’s kids to participate in sports, and they can find ways to pay for the cost, or lower the cost!

Give kids as many opportunities as you can!


Baby Better Be Going Pro For That Cost..

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

Should community sport be available equally to all people? This is a difficult issue to tackle. Sondra, a mother of two boys hoping to play baseball, could agree. Her financial situation is tight, and she believes she cannot afford the participation fee for her sons. The local recreation center told her that participation through their league is a privilege, not a right. -Now that is a bold statement for youth sport.


According to Paul M. Pedersen there are many benefits of community sport. The quality of life, family life, and bonding/social aspects are all positively experienced through sport. One could afrue sport teaches youth many important lessons, develops friendships with common bonds, and physical benefitting factors.


Most people only see the upfront “exercise” benefit of sports, but in reality the benefits go far deeper. Even if your child is not the most athletic kid, they can still benefit from athletics. Children benefit from many different aspects of development including Physical, Emotional, Physiological, Academic, Problem Solving, Conflict Resolution, Discipline, and Work ethic.


Pedersen explains the steps to decision making into six steps:

-define/frame the problem

-identify decision criteria

-develop and evaluate alternatives

-select one of the alternatives

-implement alternative

-evaluate how effective it was



In Sondra’s circumstance, the financial situation is the issue. The importance of sport for youth is unlike other activities available for young people. There should be a way to help families that need financial assistance. Whether that be volunteering, coaching, helping with the rec, setting up financial plans, etc. Setting up a financial plan for low income families would be a alternative the recreation center could evaluate after a season or two and see how beneficial it is for the program and families. Sondra and her family may not be the only family in a tight financial situation. Having financial help available would create more opportunities for the community and potentially expand the amount of participants/youths.



^^ways to save $$ with youth sport.




Will That Be Cash or Callousness?

Monday, October 28th, 2013

This is a difficult issue. When initially looked at, it would seem to be a win/lose situation for either parties. On one side of the spectrum, if Sondra can’t afford the fee, her kids lose out but the Rec. Center doesn’t take a financial hit or instigate PR issues. However, on the other side, if the Rec. Center allows the kids to play, it will benefit the family but concurrently increase the centers financial strain and generate PR issues with other families who want equal treatment. Additionally, if the Rec. Center doesn’t charge fees to make money, they can’t continue the programs and everyone loses out. So the question is posed, should kids suffer and lose out on opportunity, just because they don’t have money or should Rec. Centers allow fiscally strained kids to play, but take a hit in both the financial and PR departments?

Along with the family and the center’s director, one other group should be considered in this situation. All the other families of the sports program should be consulted. If they are informed to the state of Sondra’s family, perhaps they could help her or at least try and understand the problem. The director could ask all the people involved, and see if they wouldn’t mind that Sondra’s kids play for free or ask for financial help from families that can afford it. Another option could be that Sondra performs some community service within the sports program in return for letting her children play.

The common good approach would be the best way to confront this situation. This issue deals with a community program, so it should be looked at as a communal effort. Everyone’s actions benefit the whole.


The children should not be the ones getting punished.

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Getting involved in a recreational sport or league especially at a young age is always fun and exciting. Getting children involved in sports helps them learn how to be team players, how to socially interact with other children and helps them build confidence. However, being on these teams come with fees for their equipment and other expenses. Is it right to strip the child of being on a team sport because some families are not able to afford it.

Sondra’s children are the ones being most affected by the decision to not allow them to play because they are losing the opportunity to learn and grow. I believe this decision is about what is most efficient for the company rather than thinking of another way to help the children. It is known that there is no financial support for parents such as Sondra with a limited family income. I could learn more about options available for her but I do not believe there is enough evidence to make a decision.

I believe some children have a higher stake in the outcome because a sports team helps keep them mentally and physically stimulated and focusing their energy on a goal to help the team succeed. Learning this at a small age can be beneficial as they grow older. Some options I came up with is the children can do community service around the recreation center to help pay off their fees or they could host a fundraiser. Either way the child is learning how to raise the fees themselves and it leaves them in control of what they want.

This could approached by the utilitarian approach because if children can work off their fees to the recreation center then they could essentially almost get “unpaid” labor. Fundraising is also an excellent choice to make if the rec center has more than one family who needs help financially being able to pay for the fees. I believe this is the best approach because kids learn how to work and earn something as suppose to it just being handed to them. If this were to be sought out then the children would need adult supervision the entire time, so nothing happens to them.


Single Mother’s Privileges

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Single mother’s like Sondra take on considerably more than most parents in partnerships.  This scenario reflects what the recreation center deems as privilege and in this case it is that they hold true to their participation fees.  Is sport participation a right or a privilege? Sondra is a single mother who is raising four children and while she wants to provide the opportunity of sports participation for two of her children is not able to afford the $125 participation fee.  She has sought financial assistance through the recreation center, but budget cuts have not allowed them to offer this to her.  Financial assistance from the recreation center seems to be the only alternative that Sondra has looked into and they told her,

“sport participation is a privilege, not a right…the recreation center was therefore under no obligation to provide financial support.”

It seems that it sports participation is only a privilege for people who are able to afford the sum of money for participation and because of this there reflects socio-economic discrimination in this suburban Midwestern area of the United Sates. Some alternatives that have not been addressed are to seek other baseball leagues within the area to see if any other institutions would help her children to be allowed to participate in sports for a more affordable fee and if she wanted to continue to stay at the recreation center maybe she could see if there was a way she could make payments instead of paying the full sum at once.  If Sondra was only able to afford the participation fee for one child then she could also do this as well.  It seems that Sondra has chosen the recreation center for some reason as well as trying to provide new opportunities for two of her four children, so asking the staff or managers at that facility if she could make payments over the duration of the baseball season seems like a possibility.  If she was able to explain her situation they may have a payment plan available so that her children would still be able to participate and the facility would still be paid the amount of money they have asked for.  This approach which is a mix between the common good and utilitarian approaches seems most appropriate of for the situation.  If the facility is willing to work with Sondra in her financial situation they would be gaining a loyal costumer who has two other children that she would want to provide opportunities for in the future.  She would also be happy that she was able to provide this opportunity for children and the two children who were able to participate would benefit by learning life skills such as, building self-esteem, team work, communication with new and different people, how to deal with challenges all while having fun and feeling that they belong to something.  I think this alternative would provide the most positive outcome for all people involved in this situation.

Money Problems $?

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Sondra is trying to do the best for her children by getting them to be active and participating in sport; but the issue is the fee for the league. Some families may be in the same position as Sondra, having the fee of a sport league be the problem for not offering their children the opportunity to play in a sport offered by their recreational center. It gives them an unfair chance to play and become active.

The fact is because of economic problems, recreation centers have to do budget cuts in order to keep allowing services, but this may also mean in higher fees for sport leagues and/or not being able to give financial assistance for those who need it. This then can make it difficult for families with multiple children or even one child to pay for the cost of a sport league offered by the recreation center. Even though the cost of the league is $75 per child with a $25 discount for multiple children may not seem to be costly for some, for others it may be a financial issue. Those who are unable to pay the fee because of rejected financial assistance, may have the issue for their children to become heavier because of lack of motivation to be active, maybe less social, and/or less opportunity to learn new skills or master skills they already know. Like Sondra, parents may need to explore different options in order to give their children the opportunity to play; for example, talking to the director in order to come up with a plan to allow the children to play, this could be coming up with a payment plan or  the fee is based on the income of family. Also the director may come up with ways to make money for the funding of the recreation center.


As part of the ethical decision making process, the best options to work for this issue would be the utilitarian approach or the common good approach. Both of these approaches fall along the same line of what is the best for this issue and what options there is to address the problem. Such options that can be offered to address the issue of allowing Sondra’s children play using the approaches chosen could look into the examples given above.

In my opinion, if I was in the director’s place, rather than just pointing out that no financial assistance would be available, I would look for options that will allow Sondra’s children play while getting the fee situation settled. There are many families that run into this problem, and instead of rejecting their children from playing in a recreation center league sport, options about the payment should be considered.

More about budget cuts affect on youth sports:

Money Trees: The common good approach for all classes in youth sport

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Kids playing sports when they are young is a big part of their young lives. Unfortunately sometimes it cost money to participate in the youth leagues, which is the case for Sondra. Sondra the single mother of four children would like to enroll two her kids into a youth sports league. Sondra is a single mother, who doesn’t have the financial resources to enroll her kids for the $75 fee. The youth league even offers a discount for enrolling multiple children, but that cost is still too much for Sondra.

This situation doesn’t just affect Sondra; there are families all over the country that are affected by financial situations like this. For Sondra she was told that “sport participation is a privilege, not a right”, but I feel that sport participation is important for kids growing up. By participating in sports, it allows kids to live a fit/healthy life, and also gives them something to do and stay out of trouble. The kids that are more likely to be troubled in life are the kids in the lower economic class. I myself don’t feel as if sports should be limited by money, especially with kids. Sure it cost money to run the leagues, but there should be someway that would allow low-income children to participate in sports.

Finding that balance of how to implement a way to allow kids of all financial standing to participate in sport is probably the most difficult issue that resides with this situation. So as we all know that money doesn’t grow on trees (or we at least haven’t found that tree yet), when trying to find the balance that allows equal access to youth sports for all economic classes would be the common good approach. When thinking of a way to do this I came up with a couple ideas, like starting a petition to lower costs, or have a payment plan. I know that the rec center in this situation said that they were in tight budget at the time, but they would have to be able to do something to help the kids out. I don’t think that this would be the most affective way to take action for this situation, most ideal yes, would it work probably not. Another way to take action with Sondra’s situation would be to look at other leagues around, or after school programs that are offered at her kid’s schools. This type of action probably isn’t the most ethical way to do so, because her kids should have a right to play in this league.

The best way I could think of to take action with this situation would be, to offer a fundraising opportunity to kids before the league starts. This would allow them to raise money that would go toward their participation fee. By doing this it allows all kids to raise their own money to play in the league instead of it coming from the family income. As the kids earn their own money it helps them achieve the goal of participating in sports without creating a financial deficit to their family’s budget.

So when dealing with money and sports we will always run into complications. In the case of Sondra’s situation this is the action that I would take. I do agree that sports are a privilege but shouldn’t be limited by money, for kids who really want to play sports. So fundraising in a situation like this would be the best way to help both the family, and the rec center. It allows the kids to raise their own money teaching that sport is a privilege, and the rec center gets their money still.


Too Much, Too Young

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Obviously, Sondra and her children are being hurt, because she cannot make enough money for the payments to allow her two oldest children to participate in their community  youth baseball team. The community sport is also facing a crisis, if they continue to increase their funding requirements, then they too may lose youth participants.

A good alternative that could help Sondra out, would be to  allow her kids to participate in the community youth sport team and have her set up a bill-pay where she pays a minimum fee over the season until she has paid off the fees for her children. If she does not keep up with the payments then they could talk to Sondra and explain that her children may not be allowed to participate further in their youth baseball team. The director of the public recreation center could offer some reasons why the payments are so costly, possibly state where Sondra’s money is being put to good use such as facility fees that are required to be paid.

That means the club has boosted its participation fees by $50 per athlete, she continued, which is difficult to charge considering that many of the club’s kids come from one-income families getting by on about $1,500 a month. George B. Sánchez, 2008. 

Allowing Sondra’s children to participate and be involved in sport activities for a low cost could really benefit them. But, the recreation already offers $25 discount for multiple children from the same family, either way the justice approach would be the most influential decision to make.  The recreation director could also refer Sondra and her kids to seek donations from supporters who are in partnership with the community youth sport league. That way Sondra’s kids can participate and the bills get paid.

“Global Warming of Youth Sports”

Monday, October 28th, 2013

” Sports for kids are a great foundation for things like sportsmanship, teamwork, self-esteem, developing habits that lead to being active throughout your life.  These are very attainable goals for kids who are playing sports.

I think the problem arises when we lose sight of that and our focus shifts to less attainable goals: college scholarships, living vicariously through your children, the possibility that your child will be a professional athlete.  When that becomes the focus, then we’re vulnerable to making decisions that aren’t always in the best interest of our kid. ” Mark Hyman

With this quote the author describes the rights to having youth play sports the right to be able to enjoy recrational sports. Where does the fine line between enjoyment and cost be drawn?  In the case of Sondra and her children where cost is a factor. Sondra should not be under any financial obligation to pay fees, even though the argument is that youth sport is a “priviledge.”

With the rise in parents spending more money on youth sports and coaching, rise in commercialization of youth sport has risen (Hyman 2011) .  This Makes it difficult for under priveladge  youth to participate in youth sports these days.

With the rising costs of youth sport participation there are other ways that sondra can determine whats important and get some ideas through research and educate herself. By finding out her options and education herself she may find outlets to getting her children the benefits she feels they deserve.

according to the article by y Karen Datko there are many options parents can discuss and go by when they are challenged by certain obstacles pertaining to finance.

  • Be honest with yourself. Has your child demonstrated remarkable ability in a particular sport that justifies the expense?
  • If not, pick a recreational league sport that doesn’t require fancy equipment — and that your child enjoys.
  • Seek balance. If your child’s sports are preventing her or him from engaging in other normal childhood and family activities, perhaps you’ve gone overboard. The same applies if you have no quality time with your others kids and your spouse.
  • Donate. If you can easily afford to pay the fees and other costs associated with your children’s sports, make a point of donating money to an organization that helps less-well-off kids participate.
  • If you’re not flush, look for scholarships. “True, some leagues — although they don’t openly advertise it — offer scholarships, but it’s just a small percentage,”
So even though Sondra had found herself in a horrible predicament not all is lost there are options she can take and think of, Not all Hope Is lost. The children can play.



To play or not to pay, that is the question

Monday, October 28th, 2013