What's up everyone? I know I'm not the only person that when I was growing up playing sports, once I reached a certain age, I decided to focus all my attention on being great at one sport. Injuries were an added factor in my decision, but for lots of kids nowadays, they are forced with the choice of playing multiple sports or focusing on one sport. I was listening to The Final Fourcast podcast and they had Jonnie West on as a guest to the show. During the episode, it was brought up whether it was more beneficial to play multiple sports growing up or to give all your energy to one sport. It made my mind start to race thinking of the actual benefits of each option and which path is the better route. Here are some benefits of each decision and then I will give my opinion on the situations.
As an athlete, we are faced with practices and extra curriculars throughout our careers. When you look at the possibility of only putting energy and focus into one specific sport, you eliminate some unnecessary stresses and ergonomic crutches. Most people look at only playing one sport as a plethora of missed opportunities. Although this could be true, it also allows you to focus on perfecting your craft no matter what the sport. There is no wasted energy on other activities that you don't feel give you the best opportunity to reach the next level. It also allows you the ability to study the sport and your abilities year round. I also believe that this mindset is more of an old school approach.
On the other hand, some athletes now look to play multiple sports as they go through their high school careers. When looking at this approach, one thing stands out, exhaustion. Although this may not be the case, the opportunity for body recovery can be valuable. Multiple sports allows athletes to stay in shape and work muscles and joints that may not regularly get used in your top sport. It also creates the chances to learn different techniques and abilities that could benefit them in other aspects of their game. Sports in general provide platforms for younger athletes to gain skills that are not just learned in everyday life. This aspect makes every opportunity to participate in athletics extremely beneficial.
Growing up, I was never forced to play or not to play a sport. My parents provided me every opportunity I needed to be successful in the world of sports. I played basketball, football for a while, and then golf but due to injuries, I was forced to only play golf during my high school years. In all honesty, even without injuries, I would have most likely decided to focus all my energy on one sport although it probably would not have been golf. Looking back, I feel as though I would have regretted the missed opportunities to play multiple sports given that I would have been able. Any athlete in middle or high school should look to participate in all the sports they want too, because before you know it, that time will have passed and all you will have left is the memories.