Giving a Voice to the Silence offers positive angles to the issue that faces those with mental illness. Living with Schizo-Affective Disorder and being able to share my experiences with others, is the best way I know how to pay it forward. Life can be difficult, my goal is to bring a bit of hope to a place where many feel there is none.

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Mentality of High School Sports

English: Sports time
English: Sports time (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I like to focus mainly on the aspects of Bipolar disorder and mental health in general, but this post was begging to be written.

If you have ever attended a high school sports game, you know the amount of emotions that the players have and those in the stands express.  The game is serious business; pro sports have nothing on the spirit and determination of these kids.  What gets me though is when it is taken too far and no stops it.
My youngest daughter started playing soccer when she was 4 years old, for 14 years we traveled more miles than I can remember and watch hundreds of games.  What always got me was how coaches would tell their players, win at all cost.  Is that something you really want to teach a child?  When she was 5 years old, she had a coach who believed in winning and would run the score up – they were 4 and 5 years old!!!    

As she got older, the game became more demanding, the cheap shots increased and the injuries were more frequent.  Her senior year in high school she hurt her back and has not played since, she coaches now and still loves the game more than anything.  Last night her high school team had their first round play-off game, they were confident of a win and played their hearts out.  Their head coach teaches respect above all and while there are cheap shots sometimes, pushing, etc., they know the limit, until last night.  With 24, seconds left in the game the other team decided it was time to take out our star player, grabbed her and threw her to the ground, sat on top of her and started punching her.  The referees were paying no attention to the incident, and they hadn’t for most of the game.  One of our players ran up to the girl hitting and pushed her off.  What happened next is crazy, she is now out for the rest of playoffs!  She was Red carded for helping her fellow teammate from being beaten up on the field.  While I understand it was not the right thing to do, it was an impulse on her part, but if the refs had been paying attention to what was happening throughout the game, they would have seen what was coming.    

These kids need better coaches and parents who will teach them right from wrong.  It is a demanding game, there are a lot of emotions and these girls give everything they have, but at what cost.  I have known refs that will not coach girl's soccer because it has become so violent, and they can’t control it.  For those who are wondering, the girls are more physical on the field than the boys. 

What is seen on the field show the mentality of the players, the coaches and the parents who guide our kids and show them how to play the game. 

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