WYSONG e-HEALTH LETTER
for Thinking People~
CHILD BE AN OLYMPIAN?
Although Olympic athletes
are portrayed as "national heroes" and poignant stories
are detailed about their difficult lives, this may not be what our
children should aspire to.
Consider that most top-level
athletes begin their careers as children or adolescents. It's not just a matter of who sacrifices the most and who
works the hardest. Problems associated with high-level sport include delay in
growth, a variety of musculoskeletal injuries, side effects of performance
enhancing drugs and psychological damage. Many children become victims of parental
ambitions, the demands of trainers and the totalitarian control
of their sport organizations. Such training can indeed damage an adolescent's social
life, psychosocial development and their physical health. Consider that young children are really unable to knowledgeably
consent to rigorous training programs, time-consuming exercise and
other abnormal life patterns, and thus their psychological development
can become distorted.
As I repeatedly mention in
the e-Health Letter, anything in excess can be toxic. This applies to sport exercise and training as well. Regular exercise and the challenge of sport, mixed with a
full social and vocational life, can indeed be healthy. But a singular emphasis on any one
aspect of life, sacrificing all else for its sake, can be damaging
and one would question the right of any parent or adult organization
to force it on children.
Copyright 2002, Wysong Corporation.
The Wysong e-Health Letter is an educational newsletter.
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for individual conditions or situations. The e-Health Letter does
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of educational and often controversial information presented in the