Maybe it's my unschooling metallity that I just don't get this UPDATE in 67 He called - Page 4 - Mothering Forums

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#91 of 99 Old 05-22-2010, 01:45 AM
 
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Originally Posted by WCM View Post
So, I like to play sports for FUN, not to win, but to play with other people. And my kids do too.
I don't know what to say, other than as soon as you introduce the concept of winning and losing a competition has begun. Some people have a really hard time curbing their competitive spirit to have fun even if they are losing. I know my DH is one of them. But he is a typical "sports guy". Sports really matter to him.

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But there should be a place for both, and not one place, two separate options. At our kids pool, once you pass a certain level (5?) your only option to continue learning s to join the Lightening Fast Swim team. but my son doesn't want that, he just wants more practice on his regular swimming. so he opts not to go at all.
I think it is a supply and demand thing. I think the number of people who are interested in playing at a sport are hugely outnumbered by the people interested in playing a sport and that it is why most coaches, teams, etc. are competitive in nature.

Do you know if your pool has Jr. Masters? They have both competitive and fitness programs. The fitness programs will have challenges and events, but they are more of a personal fitness challenge vs. a swim meet.
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#92 of 99 Old 05-22-2010, 04:18 AM
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I've known about winning and losing since was a kid, but I just don't care. I feel great when I do well at my sport, and support myself when I mess up. I see my teammates in this same light and treat them with respect and encouragement.

I think it is our culture and our misguided idea that each child is a hidden talented genius if only we expose and guide them correctly. That if they like soccer, sign them up to a team (how else can they ever get any playtime?) and get into it. That if you want to dance you must pick a style, buy the gear and get serious. No talking, no letting your parents watch. You need to start the kids young so they can find their niche and master it quickly. It's okay to be an artist and shun academics, but you must show an affinity for your art early on, so we can keep you on track and churn our another Mozart or Gretsky.

My in-laws read Outliers and now they are all about the kids logging 10,000 hours at their given talent.

My brother played hockey for years and was picked for an Olympic training team. He dropped it as soon as he was picked (he just wanted to keep having fun playing) and now is an artist in tech design. He wishes he could have stayed with hockey without it having to 'go somewhere'.

Hmm . . my point? We make everything too serious and competitive, when there is no reason to. I don't need to prove anything through sport, and my kids have learned that too. When I run into folks that are uber-competitive, I just walk away. I have passion for sports, I have a really fun time and work hard, but the winning/losing gig? So not my interest. And yes, one can exist without the other.

Passionate posts = oodles of typos
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#93 of 99 Old 05-22-2010, 05:42 AM
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Where we lived, starting at U-10 or so, there were "rec" (recreational) soccer leagues and "travel" (competitive) ones. It was a nice system, because everyone was sort of on the same page. Travel leagues required try-outs and more time, rec leagues were more for fun.

Rain also played Y-ball through the YMCA one year, when she was maybe 9? She'd never played softball before, and this was a really non-competitive sort of introduction - no scoring, everyone gets to bat until they hit the ball, everyone plays the whole game... really, for her it was a little bit *too* uncompetitive, but for some kids I think it was perfect.

 
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#94 of 99 Old 05-22-2010, 06:14 PM
 
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I think it is our culture and our misguided idea that each child is a hidden talented genius if only we expose and guide them correctly...
Hmm . . my point? We make everything too serious and competitive, when there is no reason to. I don't need to prove anything through sport, and my kids have learned that too...
I have passion for sports, I have a really fun time and work hard, but the winning/losing gig? So not my interest. And yes, one can exist without the other.
Thank you for saying this WCM! I totally agree with you!♥

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#95 of 99 Old 05-22-2010, 08:58 PM
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i think it's an interesting question about playing for fun and being competitive/serious.

a lot of it, i think, has to do with parents living vicariously through their children, rather than having their own athletic pursuits. i note that parents who have their own athletic pursuits tend, in general, to be the parents least interested in whether or not their children are "serious" about a sport. most of these parents are not looking at how it will help their career, or trying to go pro or get scholarships--they are choosing it because they enjoy it.

aside from that, i think it is possible to have fun and be competitive (prefer to win or strive for excellence). it is possible to 'be serious' and to have fun as well. but i do agree that it doesn't ahve to be about winning or the strange pressures that a lot of groups put on their chidlren, teams, etc.

strange, really.
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#96 of 99 Old 05-24-2010, 11:22 AM
 
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i think it's an interesting question about playing for fun and being competitive/serious.

a lot of it, i think, has to do with parents living vicariously through their children, rather than having their own athletic pursuits. i note that parents who have their own athletic pursuits tend, in general, to be the parents least interested in whether or not their children are "serious" about a sport. most of these parents are not looking at how it will help their career, or trying to go pro or get scholarships--they are choosing it because they enjoy it.

aside from that, i think it is possible to have fun and be competitive (prefer to win or strive for excellence). it is possible to 'be serious' and to have fun as well. but i do agree that it doesn't ahve to be about winning or the strange pressures that a lot of groups put on their chidlren, teams, etc.

strange, really.
I totally agree with you Zoebird! Especially the part in bold because I have noticed that too!

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"I am learning all the time, the tombstone will be my diploma"- Eartha Kitt
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#97 of 99 Old 05-24-2010, 02:13 PM
 
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Originally Posted by zoebird View Post
A lot of it, i think, has to do with parents living vicariously through their children, rather than having their own athletic pursuits. i note that parents who have their own athletic pursuits tend, in general, to be the parents least interested in whether or not their children are "serious" about a sport. most of these parents are not looking at how it will help their career, or trying to go pro or get scholarships--they are choosing it because they enjoy it.
I completely disagree. 99.99% of children participating in competitive anything have no chance of going pro or getting a scholarship. Most sports parents want their children to be serious about sports (or music, or dance) because they feel it is an analogue for adult life, and it is a safe way to learn how to assert yourself, to learn the importance of repetition and precision, how to manage disappointment, how to be a gracious winner, etc. Expecting a child to be serious about their sport (or instrument, or dance) is not the same thing as being a crazy person living vicariously through their child's endeavors. If you don't think that children should be serious about sports if they don't want to be, that's fine. Especially as an unschooler, where the expectation is that child will determine what they will be serious about and what they won't be. But many families successfully use sports to raise kind, adjusted, confident people.

If you want to just "have fun" playing a sport, there is no need to join any kind of formal organization or do structured activities. But formal organizations and structured activities are not evil soul sucking enterprises.
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#98 of 99 Old 05-24-2010, 10:34 PM
 
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Rhiandmoi,

Do you mind telling me how old your children are? The reason that I am asking is because most "serious" sport parents I have met in 27 years of having kids involved in sports are/were not looking to develop "an analogue for adult life, a safe way to learn how to assert yourself, to learn the importance of repetition and precision, how to manage disappointment, how to be a gracious winner, etc."
Most of the serious sport parents that I have met are looking for a way for their child(ren) to have a competitive edge when it comes to getting into good schools(both high school and college).
And if your own child(ren) are fairly young(under 6 or so)you might not have come in contact with the kind of parents that some of us on this thread are talking about.
I noticed a real change in what parents wanted out of sports for their children right around 8 or so and before I witnessed it first hand, I would not have believed that parents would want to be so competitive either.
I think that how you see sport parents is all about the age of your children, what kinds of experiences they have and your perspective of how the sport should be.

Take Care,
Erika(I don't wear a fro, I'm just a sister who likes this smilie!):

"Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail..."
"I am learning all the time, the tombstone will be my diploma"- Eartha Kitt
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#99 of 99 Old 05-25-2010, 01:01 PM
 
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Just wanted to tell op I totally agree with everything you've written. I read the WHOLE thread and would never agree to random rules by someone who. was not in a place to make rules. I also hate pushing children to take sports more seriously during "playtime". My dad always did this. My brother and I could never play sports during our spare time without my father coaching . Shouting out the house windows to us " no hands on the ball' while we played in the back yard with a soccer ball. Telling me to practice my jumps during open skate. Dads cleaning car while we shot baskets "guys gotta stop traveling" we never played these sports competitively we just wanted to goof around he was the boss though and we did comply. I am competitive and did compete in other sports seriously but sometimes kids just need to PLAY.
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