Our first book, published in 2014, is still an Amazon #1 Bestseller in Coaching Youth Sports and has nearly 100 5-star reviews.
Conventional wisdom holds that youth sports are a positive experience for our children. Unfortunately, 70% of kids drop out of organized athletics by the age of 13. Most of these children quit because our youth sports culture has taken the ‘play’ out of ‘play ball.’ A shift in values, the rise of expensive youth sports models, and the myth of abundant athletic scholarships has led parents and coaches to focus on wins instead of enjoyment, and trophies at the expense of development. As a result, every day increasing numbers of children quit playing sports that are no longer enjoyable. Conventional wisdom is wrong.
In Changing the Game, John O’Sullivan draws upon three decades of high level playing and coaching experience to take us behind the scenes of competitive youth sports, and demonstrates how they have changed from being a fun pastime to an ultra-competitive, adult-centered enterprise that is failing our children. He then teaches parents that the secret to raising happy, high performing children begins by helping them attain a positive mindset, and an enjoyable youth sports environment. By following seven actionable principles of high performance, parents can give their children a competitive edge, while at the same time making youth sports a positive experience for their family, their community, and their country.
“The romance is gone, the fun has disappeared, and children no longer simply ‘play’ sports,” says O’Sullivan. Changing the Game is a call to action to reverse this trend. It will change how you think about youth sports. It will teach you the secrets of high performance. It will help your children to perform better. And it will put the “play” back in “play ball” for all of our young athletes. Are you ready to take action? Are you ready to change the game?
What Every Parent Needs to Know About Early Sports Specialization and its Effect Upon Your Child’s Athletic Performance
Do you feel like your young athlete is being asked to do more, more, more at a very young age? Isn't youth sports very different than when we were growing up? Should your child play multiple sports, or pick a single sport and go for it? It's enough to drive you crazy. John O’Sullivan has complied the latest research into the physical, social and psychological impacts of early vs late sport specialization, so that parents and coaches can lead their athletes down the right path when it comes to youth sports. You will learn:
1. The facts about early sports specialization that many parents, coaches and organizations don’t know but can significantly affect your child’s sports experience
2. The path that most athletes have taken to become professional and elite athletes, and gives your child the BEST chance of optimal performance
3. How to ensure sports are physically, psychologically and socially beneficial to your child
4. How to speak to coaches and organizations that are pushing your child down a path that is not supported by the best practices of player development ...and so much more.
If your child is being forced into a sport, and if you don't know where to turn for answers, "Is It Wise to Specialize" will provide you with practical guidance and cut through all the red tape, so your child and you can enjoy youth sports.