Is the pain worth the gain?

Submitted by ub on Tue, 08/28/2012 - 16:36

In football, pain is the name of the game. The whole purpose is to collide with the opposition to prevent them from scoring. These collisions can lead to serious injury, including concussions and joint damage. This presents a dilemma for parents: is it worth risking injury to allow their kids the many experiences gained through the game?
Sports teach children valuable life skills such as teamwork and being able to accept losses. It is certain that playing competitive sports makes children more prepared for the challenges of life. Does this value outweigh the possible long-term damage that can be done to the body? I believe it does, to an extent.

Sports leagues have recently brought about more strict regulations for concussions at all levels, ensuring that athletes will not be playing while suffering from a concussion. This is a very important step in protecting the most necessary organ of the body. I believe there is a point at which the health of the athlete should become priority. Once the athlete has sustained multiple serious injuries, I think that he or she should stop playing that sport.
Parents should encourage their children to play sports because of the life skills they instill, but there must be a point at which they consider the future quality of life of their children. No one wants to see a kid grow up and suffer from severe memory loss or not be able to walk due to knee damage. There must be a point at which they decide enough is enough and the long-term pain is not worth the gain.

Lauren Keyser