Question: My son has been evaluated by a training company and they estimated that he could end up being 6′ 5″. He currently is 6’2″ and 220 pounds and fifteen years old. Should he train a couple of days a week in addition to what they have him doing at school to reach his potential?
Answer: Without going into to much detail, he could do complimentary training in addition to his school workouts. The keys to making it productive is to avoid repeating exercises that he has already done at school, and to do exercises that would fill in the “holes” in his school workouts.
“Reaching his potential” appears to be code for getting a scholarship to play football in college.
Fulfilling his potential requires not only physically, but mentally, learning how to approach challenges and learn from defeats.
Too often the kids of this generation of middle school and high school athletes have played so much ball, baseball and basketball especially, on so many teams, that the level of competition has been watered down by the pursuit of money. Coaches and parents have made the kids feel like they are already superstars who are only waiting to be old enough to join the collegiate or professional ranks.
While in reality, they lack the will, determination, and grit to overcome the challenges they will need to grow from training, coaches and defeats. The kid who can take defeat as a learning experience to accept the criticism of why there was a loss, make changes and return stronger is the one who will make it in whatever he or she chooses to pursue.
Let kids learn from their mistakes and failures. Making it all better for them won’t make them stronger. Obviously, provide every opportunity to help your child become the best they can at whatever they choose to do. Just don’t do it for them.
God bless and keep training,