Why would any cautious parents allow their child to play youth tackle football at the tender age of nine, ten, or eleven years of age?Football is the collision sport that carries the highest risk of injury to every bodily joint. Played long enough it methodically destroys the knee, shoulder, hip, elbows and back of active participants. The young body is still in the process of development and growth and the wrong injury can retard or permanently alter the growth curve. Why? Because football can build character and teach invaluable life skills and build self esteem. At least until the wrong parents bring the ugliest of real world forces into play to ruin it.
Football can teach valuable virtues. It promotes self-discipline and postponement of current pleasure for future success. It builds incredible team chemistry and camaraderie and helps players function within a cooperative unit to achieve a group goal. It promotes clear decision making under pressure, resilience when adversity strikes, and courage under pressure. Honesty, accountability, respect for others, fair play–all qualities that can be immensely valuable in the classroom and on the playground. These are skills that can last a lifetime.