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High Fives & Heads-up: A Parent’s Guide to Youth Basketball

By on October 24, 2016
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Welcome back to High Fives and a Heads-up, where we take a look at the exciting (and often unusually sweaty) world of youth basketball! As parents are getting back into school routines and their kids are starting to think about trying out for their school teams, it brings to mind a topic lots of us are familiar with: youth basketball!

If you’ve had the privilege of playing, coaching or parenting youth basketball, you know the fun is everywhere to be found. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights.

HIGH FIVE: Learning Teamwork

A quick High Five to basketball for being a team sport that helps your young person learn how to struggle alongside others and learn teamwork. It’s typically one of the main reasons parents want their youngsters to play anything at all, and basketball certainly offers that benefit.

HIGH FIVE: Low Barriers to Entry

Similar to soccer, basketball is one of the best “low equipment” sports in the world, which helps explain why it’s also globally one of the most popular. What does that mean for young people who want to play it? It means they won’t lack for courts to play on, partners to play with, pickup games to try and dominate, and chances to get better!

This is all GREAT NEWS for kids whether they want to be serious about the sport or just enjoy playing. In fact, I’m still playing way too much as a 40-plus-year-old and hoping to keep my knees from crying too much. Which leads me to my next point:

HIGH FIVE: Lifelong Playability

Another great thing about basketball is that it is pretty easy to enjoy for your whole life. Maybe your kind won’t be the “LeBron James-like” behemoth he was in the peewee leagues when he hits 35 (more fadeaways at that age), but you can be sure he’ll still have lots of places to play and people to play basketball with. Being able to offer your kid a sport that can offer them both cardio and strength conditioning for their entire life isn’t the worst investment you can make.

HEADS UP: Hard Gym Floors

As the size and speed of the kids of the floor increase, you have to keep an eye out for ankle, wrist and hand injuries (mostly sprains). Basketball doesn’t run the same risk of concussive injury as football, but keep an eye on those joints.

Thanks again for reading and thinking with us about young people playing basketball. I hope we all had a little fun!


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