Sunday, February 12, 2006

 

Girls and Sports

I spent much of the weekend watching my 9 year old daughter play basketball in a area tournament. Although they twice had to face a team that had beat them earlier in the season, my daughter's team triumphed and won the tournament.

My daughter used to claim she never wanted to play basketball but wanted to be a cheerleader. I just smiled and said, "That's fine." Inside, I wanted her to play a sport whether it be basketball or something else. Under the right circumstances, sports teaches lessons that help one throughout life. For me, that lesson was to persevere, always hustle, play (work) as hard as you can and value teamwork.

One of her best friends talked my daughter into trying basketball. When I picked her up after her first practice, she looked up at me and said, "Daddy, I love basketball!" Nothings changed since. And she plays with the heart of someone who loves the game.

I love watching these girls play basketball. The intensity with which they play amazes me. They fight for rebounds, block shots, dive on the floor for loose balls and never quit. They play hard! And, they love it.

The girls on the team have developed strong friendships. They encourage each other and celebrate each others' accomplishments. They are learning the meaning of teamwork, effort and perseverance. And they are reaping the rewards. So far this year, champions in 2 of 3 tournaments and undefeated in their league.

I've seen studies that tell of the benefits of sports for girls. But, if you watch one game that these girls play, the benefits show clearly.

Oh, and they have great coaches. Thanks, guys.

Go Lady Royals (4th grade)!

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