Nov 03

One of my biggest arguments for team sports is the normalizing of the Superhero prospect. What do I mean by that? Well when you haven’t played team sports and your only experience with teams stem from either video games or what you see from a distance – your brain tends to romanticize the ability to go beast.

See in video games when you are playing sports or even military skirmishes, you have power-ups that can be timed and used to allow one member of the team to single-handedly bring it back. When you play a team sport and you try to individualize the loss and turn on beast mode, you find that it isn’t something that you can call up at will. Only a very small amount of people can turn on the beast successfully but when you play games and watch movies you think that it takes a wink of the eye to perform miracles.

Watch any big time NFL or NBA game and listen to the fans and it will be easy to pick out the ones who haven’t been in the field personally. Those guys will say stuff like “ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS GIVE IT TO JORDAN!” or “we can’t lose we have Tom Brady!” See these guys are sold on the prospect of the beast. People who have been at crunch-time and disappointed time after time when they or whoever the team star is fails at a miracle will know that it is all in the cards.

You can’t take over a team and grab the ball and score 100 points; that is the stuff of movies, books and videogames. What you learn in a team environment however is how to gauge yours and your teammates strengths and weaknesses. You learn that your team relies on you to finish strong whenever you get the baton on the relays. You don’t look to save the team; you look to do your role to the best of your ability.

Self-Respect and  Hero Worship in Sports

In sports you rarely sit around worshiping the titan on your team. This mentality expands beyond the team into life itself. You may know who the gifted athlete on your team is but he/she only makes you strive to do better.

Rarely in a team setting do you see someone sit around in awe watching their teammate score. No they are running with him to the end-zone, making a key block to help him score and jumping on his back in celebration once he’s in. Team players know how to respect a star’s space and they know how to congratulate him for his accomplishments. These two things are huge in  the corporate world where the sharks are great whites and the admirers are stuck in the mailroom.

Kids Need Team Sports

So if you are a parent who worries that little Billy will sprain his ankle if he plays team sports, you may be doing him a disservice. No way am I asserting that being an offensive lineman on your High School football team will make you a high paid corporate barracuda, but I can honestly say that you will handle the position a lot better.

Nothing builds character like the fine art of competition when you aren’t the sole controller. We are made to work together in life on many different plains. So why stunt the preparation of a child to enter into a world that is a team-oriented landscape?

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