Local journalist, former girls' track coach, runner, parent, and Summit resident Linda Flanagan has written a captivating book about "how money and mania are ruining kids' sports."
Linda's well-researched and readable book delves into how and why youth sports have taken a wrong turn in recent years with unhealthy competition, overtraining injuries, negative impacts on family dynamics and finances, and inequity in opportunities for all kids.
As a parent, I particularly connected with Linda’s anecdotes about the pressure for kids to specialize early and commit year-round to a single sport. But Linda doesn’t just shine a light on what’s not working in youth sports today – she devotes most of her book to ways that parents and coaches can “take back the game” and make youth sports a place for character development, lifelong health and fitness, mentoring from trusted and caring adults, peer support and friendship, and so much more. Hmm, sound familiar to anyone in our GOTR community?! Yes indeed, Linda’s book is definitely an affirmation of the curriculum and program model of Girls on the Run, and it also calls us to dig even deeper to look at some of the cultural and systemic issues that we can work to change for an even brighter future for all kids.
I am so thrilled that Linda is joining GOTR on Tuesday, May 9 at 5:30pm at West Caldwell Public Library for a discussion about her book and our collective commitment to improving youth development. This is a conversation that we believe is important for parents, coaches and anyone who cares about kids in our communities. Please register online for this engaging and FREE event!