Almost 8 million high school students play sports around the country. And for the vast majority of them, their sports careers end the day they graduate. Less than 3% of high school athletes go on to play college athletics, and of those students, an even smaller fraction will ever play sports professionally.
So why play at all? Because sports are about much more than just learning the physical skills of the game and winning championships. For most students, high school sports are about having fun, building lifelong friendships, preparing to take on future challenges, learning how to be a good teammate, and simply enjoying the game.
It’s important for school communities to intentionally provide students with more than just physical development and become intentional about their growth as human beings. Watch the video below to hear students explain why they play.
So how can we as parents and coaches show up and support the student-athletes in our lives, regardless of performance or the outcome of the game? We sat down with high school students and asked them—why they play, how they feel about parental pressure, and what kind of support they need before, during and after the game.
Watch the video below to learn how we can collectively help create a fun and enriching sports experience for our student-athletes.