Exhausted in competitive sports

Where I live our town rec leagues go into the late teens, and we also have town travel soccer until players graduate high school. My older son became a serious tennis player, but continued to play town travel soccer with his buddies until college.

My youngest is a totally different story. By high school he had specialized completely and only played for his club soccer team. He never played a minute for his high school team because his club/league forbids it. He trains 5 nights a week and plays matches on the weekends. The travel is extensive and expensive. The club basically owns him for 10+ months per year. I’m ready to hop off the merry-go-round, but he wouldn’t have it any other way.

why would the club forbid he play for his HS?
(Some colleges actually check to see whether the student is involved both in the HS and outside…)

@emi722 : beside Girls with bright futures (for you only), you and your child might enjoy watching The Mighty Ducks 2021, where the new team (the Don’t Bothers, I think) is made of kids who don’t want to compete seriously.

In our area club (academy) soccer players aren’t allowed to play for their HS teams for the most part. Lacrosse players all play for both HS and Club teams.

Not sure why but it has been that way for some time.


This is how it works these days for some sports like volleyball, soccer, some lacrosse. Club teams want the kids (and $) year round. In terms of recruiting, students from club teams often do have an advantage, and as such, better outcomes.

1 Like

@MYOS1634 What @Mwfan1921 said is 100% correct. We sign a contract that covers mid-August through June. He plays both a fall and spring schedule of games with a league showcase in December, and an end of season playoff in late June. He gets about 4 weeks in the winter and 6 weeks in the summer to himself. Playing for your high school is prohibited unless admission to a private school is contingent upon the player participating in a sport. In that case the player would need to apply for a waiver.

As for an advantage, it does make a difference in outcomes. Every 2021 graduating player from his team went on to play in college this fall. There are at least 4-8 coaches at every club game during the fall, and even more at spring games. This past weekend their were 20 coaches at his games.


The way it was explained to me was (1) concerns for injuries, (2) concerns for conflicting schedules, and (3) concerns for conflicting coaching.


Agree there is A LOT of bad behavior surrounding kids’ sports. I live in a competitive area where a healthy number of students do parlay their sport into Ivy recruitment so you can imagine the frenzy. Also did the horse show circuit and it would be hard to describe the money people will throw at that to get their kid noticed!

Here’s the good news - at some point, H & I rocked back and discussed what we wanted our kids to get out of the sport, and started to use some of the egregious behavior as a learning experience. We discussed sportsmanship, setting limits, realistic budgets, etc. Not saying there were no bad experiences, but overall my now adult kids learned a lot about life. (And both still enjoy participating in the same sports they played as kids)

Let’s face it - you’ll encounter jerks at all points of life so learning how to navigate them can be a real asset!

Thanks, it all makes sense.

You think lax is bad, try hockey. My friend moved to Minnesota with his 5 and 7 year olds, and they were 4 years behind! I know for the 7 year old they dropped him down one level but said he’d have to catch up by the next year as 8 year olds definitely couldn’t play with 7 year olds. They were kind of miserable but ended up moving again before the next year (divorce).

@emi722 you may want to participate in this thread as opinions are very varied as to whether some upper middle class parents push children to be the best or invest in what matter or…
"The problem with America’s semi-rich" -- sound familiar around these forums?

@MYOS1634 thank you will check it out

and if you have time, the new Mighty Ducks is just about the issue of competitive parents in middle school sports

and Girls with Bright Futures is mainly about three families (upper middle class envious of the upper class, cut-throat upperclass, and assistant/maid to the upperclass one).


My D worked as a receptionist at a school for kids who are training to be Olympic/elite athletes, concert pianists, etc. Basically, these kids (and parents)want to focus on their craft, so they want a school with flexible hours and curriculum. My D said some of the parents could be intense