Hard Ball Talks
Date: October 12, 2015
Guest: Elliott Finkelstein, Director at Triple Crown Sports. You can learn more about Elliott and the professional events that Triple Crown Sports hosts at www.triplecrownsports.com.
Topic: With an increasing number of youth clubs forming, more and more tournaments and events popping up, it is critical for us coaches and parents to take a more active role in the assessment of finding the right experience for our athletes. Events have the ability to be a contributor to the right experience in youth sports or a deterrent. Elliott took some time with us to discuss sports events, tournament experiences, and his overall passion to improve the youth sports platform.
Parents fell pressure all the time to make sure their child is having the right experience in youth sports. How do you know what the right experience is? To help you answer this question we need to first look at what motivates our youth. Motivation refers to your inspiration to take action. It can be broken down into 2 main categories: extrinsic & intrinsic motivators.
- Extrinsic motivators are doing something for an external reward (think trophies, or avoidance of negative consequences).
- Intrinsic motivators are doing something because you enjoy it or find interest in it (relationships with teammates, coaches, love of the game).
Today we are living in a broken youth sports culture. Kids are not playing youth sports with the same amount of freedom we saw just a few generations ago. From a very early age they get programmed that winning is good and losing is bad. Not wanting to experience the losing end and its consequences, our youth’s motivations increase to win. This is a prime example of extrinsic motivation. Other kids overhear the word scholarship from coaches and parents mouths by age 8. It may be a small side conversation and mean nothing to the adults, but to the 8 year old the seed has been planted for harvest. As parents and coaches of today’s youth it is our call to continue to evaluate the culture our kids are experiencing in sports. We have had the blessing of taking a step back as an organization and evaluate what dimensions Extreme has been operating in. We too found ourselves falling in the 1st dimension of the physical realm. After feeling a strong sense of calling to impact our youth as much as possible, we decided to be a component in moving our organization towards a 3D experience for our youth. We believe in the physical realm but want to also impact our kids mind and spirit around the game. What we found by taking a step back and watching teams who have 3D kids and coaches is a group who has truly fallen in love with the game. They play and compete out of enjoyment of sport – not fear of losing. The teams who have the 3D approach are not always about the x’s and o’s of the sport, for them it is about the relationship-building component with our youth.
Here is what one would witness if he or she saw a 3D team playing against a 1D team.
- Team 3D observations:
- Kids on the field filled with joy and playing fearless. Mistakes are just mistakes, moments to learn more about the game they love.
- Parents and other family in the stands sitting as one big group rooting on the entire team experiencing the game and enjoying the gift.
- Belief that the process, the relationships, and the trials and tribulations of sport are there for a reason. Belief that each lesson learned is all part of a bigger picture.
- Team 1D observations:
- Kids on the fields are robotic in an effort to play the game perfect. When they make mistakes it impacts their self-worth and belief in themselves.
- Parents and other family in the stands are pre-occupied & scattered away from one another. Not looking or speaking until their kid is up for their turn.
- Frustration at every misstep. Their belief is low and it can be seen in outburst at the kids playing, the officials, and even the coaches.
As you can see the 2 teams highlighted are living in 2 different worlds. Today’s youth sports culture finds 1D teams a dime a dozen. It is our intent to be a component of change for our youth and to help facilitate the support, structure, and environment for the 3D Experience for our families and coaches in sport. Each kid, family, and coach should get to experience the game through intrinsic motivations – enjoyment, high belief in themselves, confidence that everything is part of a bigger plan, and the lessons learned will be paid forward in life through school, work, and one day family.
We encourage you to consider what environment you put your kid in for their youth sports experience. If you want to be a coach in the 3D environment shoot us an inquiry HERE. We are always looking for kids, coaches, and teams to come and join our mission!