Should you spur your baby to play dangerous sports activities with the intention of turning into a professional athlete and making a shipload of cash? De la chanson or it depends on the kid, figure, talent, motive, and opportunity. The solution is a convincing “no” if you ask this parent of four. I will provide an explanation for more of my rationale later. For a starter, caveat emptor: sports activities, like different organizations, have exploitative under-bellies few see or want to see. Being proactive is prudent because of advice is given after harm tantamount to medicine after demise.

Obesity is a worldwide fitness trouble with recognized outcomes. Some of those consequences are excessive blood stress, Type II diabetes, heart disorder, sleep apnea, joints ailment, numerous cancers, to call some. But do not tell that to many Nigerians (in particular and Africans in fashionable) who agree with that being fat is a wonderful element, a standing image, evidence of appropriate dwelling and wealth. Engaging in physical activities for the duration of one’s existence are worth habits that promote each the quantity and the great of existence, in step with health specialists.

However, there is a huge divide between playing sports recreationally and gambling them professionally. No recreation is danger-unfastened but a few are extra dangerous than others. The admission expenses to the expert athletes’ club may be too excessive; frankly, may not be well worth it.

In my 20’s I favored looking at boxing. Sugar Ray and Thomas “Hitman” Hearns II fight comes to thoughts. Marvin Hagler, Larry Holmes, Michael Spinks, Mike Tyson, George Foreman’s 2nd coming were my favorites. I watched the ones fights every risk I were given. At one Pay-View occasion in 1987 in Oakland, California, I happen to be seated near a former boxer. As we walked out of the venue after the interesting combat, he made statements that caught in my thoughts when a spectator begrudged the hundreds of thousands the warring parties earned. He stated, “these combatants will pay dearly for the rest of their lives for the hits they have got taken nowadays.” He persisted by means of announcing, “all of the millions they made these days will no longer be sufficient to heal the lifestyles-time of ache and struggling.”

Looking back, his utterances have been instead prophetic because little was known then approximately the effects of concussions, hits to the head, overall performance enhancement tablets, Parkinson’s disease, memory loss and slurred speech troubles. Some of the sports we ship our kids to play nowadays are equally risky, don’t allow the hype, money, repute, and medical development fool us. Remember that pork came from a cow or because the Igbos say, “Suya ahu si n’ahu name”!

Seeing the massive money and repute in these sports activities, it turned into only a count of time earlier than Nigerian mother and father and/or our youngsters themselves started out pursuing the trappings of those sports activities. Some may additionally need to obtain the apparent blessings without seeing the latent pitfalls. These parents and kids need to adhere to this Einstein quote: “study the regulations of the sport [first]. And then you definitely have to play it higher [on and off the court] than anyone else”.

I must devote a paragraph and pay homage to Nigerian, and indeed international’s, athletic heroes. Dick Tiger, Christian Okoye, Hakeem Olajuwon, and cutting-edge professional players have shown sparkling examples on and off the level. They continue to be the beacon of everything brilliant approximately Nigeria and Nigerians. When became the ultimate time you heard whatever bad approximately these heroes? Through their movements, they hold to varnish the photo of our Motherland whilst corrupt politicians and 419ers are bent on tarnishing her global photo. Like grateful Nigerians anywhere, I salute those evergreen heroes.

I desire Nigerian parents each at home and, mainly, abroad are not pushing their youngsters into these sports activities to cash in. Often, we’re humans with all-out dispositions to make cash at all value. Some can also want to dispel a fable accessible and come to be exposing themselves and their youngsters to hidden dangers. According to one sportswriter, “human beings are skeptical about Nigerian gamers; they are gentle, not hard enough and too educated”. That’s a loaded statement! Trying to “show a terrible” might cost one dearly. You may consider Loyola Marymount basketball star Eric “Hank” Gathers who died at the court in 1990 at some point of a televised sport. The younger guy had an acknowledged coronary heart situation however he continued to play without taking the medicines that made him too drowsy to carry out up to his big name caliber.

All sports activities have inherent risks. As Italians say, “ogni rosa ha le sue spine” or “every rose has its thorns”. I want to ride bicycles. Lots of cyclists get hurt or even killed at the same time as bicycling. Just 3 weeks ago right here in Austin, Texas, a bicycle owner pushing his disabled motorbike turned into killed through an inattentive driving force less than 10 miles from my house. Do you realize that women’ soccer gamers preserve the second one maximum number of concussions, after American soccer gamers? To determine that one.

However, some sports activities are like cigarettes: they’re risky when played as prescribed. Some of the injuries are cumulative from very younger ages (primary and middle faculties) and the ill-results aren’t fully felt till after one’s playing days are over.

The odds of creating it to the professionals are quite infinitesimal. As a friend who played ones of those sports activities professionally tells me, “human beings simplest see the only a few who correctly jumped over to the other aspect of the ridge. But look down in the abyss to peer the multitude that did now not make it.” The few that make it to the professionals grow to be dwelling painful lives after their injuries start to occur and when their coverage benefits are no more. They speedy squander their income due to negative economic management skills. Just like too many Nigerians refuse to plan for retirement, these athletes assume they’ll continually be in the money. Those who help you waste your assets will no longer be there for you whilst you need them. Wake-retaining, if that, can only bury one after one had died, it won’t sustain the residing.

Why don’t group proprietors, coaches, crew medical doctors, use their sizable clouts to play their youngsters in these evidently rewarding sports? Other companies, which include preachers, educate their youngsters in the family organization, why now not as risky sports activities gamers? Could it’s because they the reality or, to paraphrase Ben Franklin, society writes injuries in dust and benefits in marble?

Are sports activities the most effective way to earn university scholarships? Academic scholarships are better than most sports activities scholarships. The former graduates more students than the latter. Reading will now not come up with the aforementioned injuries.

If you don’t know any ex-expert gamers in the sport your baby is probably interested in, Google or Facebook search to discover one to speak with. They are surprisingly clean to discover and you would find them inclined to help you. Listen with an open-thoughts to what they tell you; don’t take their feedback as sour ex-players comments. That is what I did years ago before my youngsters had been of age to play popular American sports. As a proactive step, I started discouraging my sons from gambling soccer. I become stunned whilst my middle schooler informed me he has been asked to try out for his school crew.

My spouse and our kids have been first jubilant at the information. I went into excessive equipment to speak him out of gambling football. When he refused to back off, I blessed him, however, informed him I might now not visit any of the video games. They stated he turned into suitable at it. He satisfied his mother to visit one of the video games. I ought to inject right here that she’s within the scientific area. After watching the game live and listening to the sounds of struggle… I suggest the hits the on the sector that day, she again domestic to join me to dissuade our son from gambling that sport. The sounds of the hits had been now not like whatever she hears from football video games on TV. My response became if she concept the middle college gamers hit hard, she will believe how harder the high schoolers and college players hit, no longer to speak of professional gamers. I couldn’t stand looking at my toddler play soccer, just cannot. Call me fowl!

After that first year of football, our son introduced to our delight that he become giving up the sport. I asked why, he said none of his group individuals had been in his Advance Placement lessons, in truth, most of them had been no longer doing nicely in school, partly because of ignored classes because of injuries and/or sports activities distractions. This is the case in Africa and elsewhere. Some excel in each sport and teachers.