MomsTeam: 'Friday Night Tykes' is how not to run a youth team

This week's best from MomsTeam.com, a health and safety website that focuses on youth sports:

  • The new reality television series "Friday Night Tykes," which premiered this week on the Esquire Network, probably has grabbed your attention. Like many of its critics, MomsTeam's Brooke de Lench was troubled about what it says about youth football in the San Antonio league. But she also saw educational value in the show because in many ways it provides a perfect example of how not to run a youth football program. In her most recent blog, Brooke listed safety issues raised in the first two-hour episode, and provide links to related MomsTeam content so you can see how the San Antonio program matches up -- or in almost all cases doesn't match up -- to how MomsTeam thinks a youth football program should be run, which should put safety over winning.
  • One of the issues raised in "Friday Night Tykes" is the always thorny one of playing time. Giving the "best" players more playing time than the so-called "weaker" players may help a team win more games, but at what cost? Some boys never miss practice, yet played the minimum. Others rarely come to practice, yet are "rewarded" for their lack of commitment with extra playing time because the coach wants to win. As Brooke de Lench explained that an equal playing or significant playing time should be the rule rather than the exception, at least up until high school varsity or until players are playing at the highest levels of their sport.
  • While bullying behavior by youth sports coaches is, as MomsTeam has been pointing out for years, an all-too-common problem, a helpful new article in the journal Pediatrics explained why it is so difficult to correct by identifying the four main tactics coaches use to avoid blame for their improper behavior.
  • While youth sports coaches come in all shapes, with different types of personalities, Brooke de Lench wrote that there are 10 things a parent should seek as signs of a good youth sports coach. How does your child's coach stack up?
  • Winter sports such as wrestling, basketball and hockey, all expose athletes to the possibility of skin infections. One of the keys to preventing the spread of the antibiotic-resistant skin infection or "super bug" known as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus ("MRSA") is proper identification and treatment of suspicious skin lesions. The infection often looks like an ordinary skin wound or boil, which may look harmless but rapidly develops into large abscesses within 24 to 48 hours. MomsTeam has created a helpful guide (with pictures, not for the squeamish) to help parents identify common skin infections.

-- MomsTeam.com and NFL Evolution.com

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