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Should My Child Participate On A Travel Team



If you are trying to make a decision as to whether to allow your child participate on a travel team answering the following questions may help:

Is your child physically as well as psychologically ready to compete at a higher level? 

Travel teams provide an opportunity for those seeking a more competitive league.  To earn a position on a travel team, a player must have strong skills and demonstrate proficiency in the game so competition is tough.  As a result there is more pressure to perform on a travel team then in a recreational setting. You must determine whether your child is ready for this type of pressure.


Is your child truly motivated to play on a travel team?

Your child must be extremely dedicated to becoming a better player and must be willing to commit a great deal of time to the team.  Practices are longer, travel is further, and play time is all year round.    Travel coaches are striving to integrate the team so that they work as one unit not as individuals.  What this means is that every player is an integral part of the team and will be missed if they are not there.  So be sure your child understands the commitment that they are under-taking when joining a travel team.


Are you prepared for the time and financial commitments?

Talk to other parents to determine exactly what the financial commitment will be and make sure it is within your budget.  In addition, investigate the time commitment involved.  You need to  find out how many times a week they practice as well as when and where does it occur.  Also consider the distance that you will have to travel for games.  Does this fit into your family's schedule?


Can your child handle not making the team?

Try-outs are a part of life as a travel team player.  The competition can be healthy as long as you, as a parent,  remember that athletics is only one part of your child's being.  It is important to display pride and give positive feedback regardless if the child makes the team or not.


What other opportunities are available in your community for your child?

Remember that learning and improvement come from participation and play so although travel teams may appear to be the best does it benefit YOUR child.  You need a team where your child's personal and athletic abilities will improve.  Maybe it is a travel team - maybe its not.