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  • Peter Miller

SGG episode #4: Youth Sports: If it costs that much, what are the effects?



Coaches are important educational leaders in our schools, communities, and universities. The Sport and the Growing Good (SGG) podcast provides embedded, front-line insights on winning and positive development. The SGG podcast can be heard here and on all major podcast platforms.


The costs of sport -- financial, social, psychological -- are considered in this SGG youth sport episode. Main themes include:

1.  Over 60% of parents will pay between $1,200 to $6,000 per year on their child’s sports, with nearly 20% of parents paying close $12,000 per year (Refer to Utah State’s Families in Sport Lab);

2.  Parents who invest extensive time and money on youth sports commonly develop “return on investment” perspectives that endure beyond youth sport experiences;

3.  Specialization in one sport often means leaving other opportunities behind;

4.  What are the implications for coaches? Coaches can respond to the focused messages of club programs with research-supported counter-statements. Coaches can slow unhealthy trends in youth sport.