These days, middle school and high school athletes sound busier then professional athletes. Practices, skill sessions, specialty training camps, trainers, coaches, games, travel teams, club teams, school teams, playing multiple sports at a time, all while trying to go to school… Then there are the pressures that come along with maintaining their instwittergrambookchats… In 2021, young athletes are at risk of overtraining and exhaustion more than ever before. Why? It mostly has to do with the youth sports culture of ‘more being better’. The reality is, more is not better, better is better.
How do we help high school athletes become the best athletes they can be? By remembering that they’re young humans in need of balance, support rather than excessive pressure to perform, and time off.
We support them while providing a consistent routine with built-in rest. It’s as simple as that. We do not overtrain them (going from practice to training session back to practice, then school and another training session after that). We do not have them competing all week and then all weekend – with no days off.
Kids need a life outside of sports. Parents and coaches need to understand this. As a coach, I have met many parents who have a solid understanding of what their child needs (days off, healthy food, support and balance). I have also met some that think the more their child is competing, the more exposure they’ll get and the more scholarship offers they’ll receive.
Reality is, to receive a college scholarship young athletes need to have a college-ready body and mind. Where does that begin? School work, physical training, nutrition, and skills. Focusing on these four pillars of performance will do wonders for figuring out a solid routine.
Professional athletes take months off from their sport’s competitive season to recover, recharge, and train.