Sunday, November 28, 2010

Youth Basketball: When Sports and Family Schedules Conflict

What do you do when sports schedules conflicts with family schedules?

We teach our kids about commitment to a team. They know that when they sign up for a sport that they are making a commitment to be there for their teammates and coach. We also teach our kids about commitment to family. We stress how important it is to be there for each other. We especially value the time our kids get with their grandparents.

This Thanksgiving weekend we were conflicted.

We had planned to go to Iowa to visit family (my in-laws) for Thanksgiving, but my daughter's AAU basketball team scheduled a Thanksgiving Tournament. This is how we handled it.

1) My wife and I sat down and talked about it. We decided that our daughter, CC, should not miss her first tournament with her new team and coach.
2) We then decided to invite the in-laws from Iowa to visit, eat turkey and watch the basketball tournament. The in-laws declined because they had made a commitment to other family members.
3) We then invited my dad to fly up from Florida to spend time with us. He accepted.

The Main Point

It is difficult to teach the value of keeping commitments when two commitments conflict. The best thing to do is talk about the conflicts openly with all involved and problem solve together.

Games 167 - 172

We had heard that my daughter's team was going to be one of the best 4th grade teams in the area but that was pure conjecture until this Thanksgiving weekend tournament began. 

Tuesday night - CC's team won the first tournament game 44-1. CC had 4 points, 5 steals and 4 assists.
Wednesday night - CC's team won 36-6. CC had a pair of free throws and played outstanding defense.
Thursday - CC got sick. She threw up for 20 straight hours from 3am to 1pm. She was too sick to come downstairs for Thanksgiving. She did not eat the entire day.
Friday - CC woke up and asked me if we had mash potatoes and gravy leftovers. She wanted some for breakfast. By 12 noon she wanted to go watch her brother practice and perhaps shoot on an empty court. She shot baskets for 1 hour. 
Friday night - CC team won 36-6 again. CC had 4 points and played defense with vigor. The team also started a 5th grade Thanksgiving Tournament. The team won that game 16-14. CC had a critical steal and assist but was pushed around by the bigger and faster 5th grade girls. We were amazed that she was standing after being so sick.
Saturday - CC's team won the Championship. CC started the game. In the first minute of play, she had two steals and two fast-break layups to give her team a 4-0 lead. The team did not look back and won the game 44-8. In the fifth grade tournament, the girls lost a physical game. They battled and took the lead late in the game, but could not hold off the bigger and stronger team.
Sunday - CC's team won the first game 40-6 and advanced to the finals. CC was hurt in the first game. As she was scrambling for a loose ball, she was basically tackled by a 5th grade girl who easily weighed her 3X. The foul was not malicious. This girl was so big that she could not control her body. CC's team lost in the finals. CC played about 1 minute but was still feeling pain in her left forearm.


  1. Stats Dad,

    If you did not figure it out yet..CC pregame meal needs to be mash patatoes and gray leftovers...This time next year she will average a double-double each game..

    Great game by game story.

  2. Maybe Wade Boggs started his pre-game chicken eating ritual under similar circumstances.

  3. One day in a week is enough to spend your whole time with your kids. Sports activities during weekend is a good choice because you'll get to enjoy while keeping yourself healthy at the same time.

  4. Well, I think that you took the right decision by inviting your dad to visit your place. In this way, you daughter also fulfilled her commitment and didn't miss her tournament. Sometimes its happen that we need to took such decisions and its important to train our children's so that they can manage multiple tasks and commitments without any difficulty.
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