In recognition of October being Drug Abuse Awareness Month, the Crescenta Valley Drug and Alcohol Prevention Coalition has collaborated with its strategic partners, the CV Weekly and Crescenta Valley Little League, with a message of promoting healthy lifestyles.
Youth Sports – The Building Block of Success
By Stu MEYER
As president of Crescenta Valley Little League, I have the opportunity to operate and oversee a youth sports program in our community. Every year about 800 kids play 20 or more games on 75 different teams with 200 volunteer parents. Watching and organizing community members to come together and share a common goal is quite an experience. It teaches you a lot about kids and how they interact with parents, coaches, other kids and competitive situations. The opportunity for our children to play in organized sports is a once in a lifetime chance to grow both physically and emotionally.
Have you ever tried to motivate your kid to run as fast as they can or drop and do push-ups? At home this is an impossible task, but on a baseball field every kid will drop and give you 10 and will gladly run full speed around the diamond. Team sports motivate kids from a young age to work hard and stay in good physical shape so they can compete at their very best. The skills and mindset nurtured in youth sports translate directly to what we try to instill in our kids at home and school. Set goals, study hard, stay positive, aim for improvement and always do your best and you will achieve success.
Youth sports teach kids (and adults) that you don’t have to win or even be that good to benefit from participating. It never ceases to surprise me, but when you ask a kid about last season they rarely recount wins and losses; they tell you stories about their teammates and what they personally learned and achieved. Their pride is palatable! Youth sports fosters self-esteem, and I get to witness it first-hand among kids as young as 4 and as old as 15.
Confidence is a valuable commodity, particularly in a world in which peer pressure and bullying often prevail.
Self-esteem is just one of the many positive byproducts of youth sports. The baseball field is often the first environment that a child learns teamwork, cooperation, and patience and they develop these critical skills all in the name of play. That is what makes it so incredible! We at CVLL have the honor to play a small, but often significant part in the building of physically strong, mentally courageous and fun-loving youth – all which are building blocks of achievement.
It is my hope that every child that plays youth sports learns this invaluable lesson: “Success comes from knowing that you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.” – John Wooden