Team sports…how important are they to the development of children? I happen to think that they are crucial. Many kids play sports for the love of the game – my brothers both played football and basketball for many years while they were growing up, and they are still both fans of both sports. Some kids play as a way to learn the sport or to make friends. Others, are not at all interested in playing sports, but their parents kind of force them into it. That was the case with me when I was a kid.
I’ll admit – I thought it would be fun to play softball. I don’t remember how old I was, but I’m guessing maybe around 8 or 9. I could catch and throw the ball, and remember telling my mom it might be fun to be on a team. The next thing I knew, I was on a team even though I cried before every practice because I was so unsure of myself and didn’t want to look stupid if I struck out or missed a ball.
I loathed practices, didn’t make any new friends (most of the girls had been playing together for many years…I was the newbie), and was afraid to play any of the bases because I didn’t want to miss the ball and have the team not like me.
No.Self.Confidence. At all. But I kept going to practices, kept running around the bases and trying different positions on the field. And what I realized was that I was better than I thought – I wasn’t the worst on the team. In fact, the team was better because I was on it. I could play several different positions, but spent a lot of time on first base or as catcher.
I learned to trust myself; believe in myself. I learned to trust others to have my back, and that I needed to have theirs. I learned how to step out of my comfort zone and try new things. How to work with girls who didn’t like me, understanding we were still part of the team. I learned discipline, pride, that practice is the only way to get better. That there was always a leader or two and lots of followers, and that a team couldn’t work without each of them.
What life lessons do kids learn from team sports?
I learned all of those things because of playing softball. Those are things I wouldn’t have learned at school, that nobody can really explain to you. They are life lessons that you have to experience for yourself. All of those things are crucial to a child learning self confidence, trust, teamwork, and passion.
All of those things are so important. And why am I mentioning all of this? Because I believe in supporting good causes, like SUBWAY’s Baseball DeSIGNS auction on ebay. Through its partnership with Little League Baseball and Softball, SUBWAY has created the third annual SUBWAY Baseball DeSIGNS tour.
The tour features more than 50 baseballs designed by kids and signed by celebrities. Fans can visit SubwayKids.comand the Official SUBWAY Facebook page to see pictures of all baseballs in the display. The baseballs from the tour are now up for online auction and fans can bid on the baseballs.
100% of the auction proceeds benefit the Little League Urban Initiative. SUBWAY Restaurants have proudly sponsored Little League Baseball since 2005 as a way to encourage Little Leaguers and their families to live active lifestyles and eat healthy.
There are some pretty cool baseballs up for bid, so what are you waiting for? Head over to SUBWAY’s Baseball DeSIGNS auction on ebayand find a ball to bid on! It’s for a fantastic cause, and the balls would make great Christmas gifts…
Answer the question “What life lessons do kids learn from playing team sports?” for a chance to win a $500 gift certificate for sporting equipment for your child’s team.
Want to help more children stay active by playing team sports? Go to SUBWAY® Baseball DeSIGNS Auction onEbay. All proceeds go to the Little League Urban Initiative, which helps fund inner-city youth leagues and teams.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SUBWAY® Baseball DeSIGNS. The opinions and text are all mine. The $500 Gift Certificate Giveaway Contest runs from August 19 – 28, 2011. A random winner will be announced by September 1, 2011. Official Contest Rules.