Tuesday September 03, 2013

To ensure every child 'wins', Ontario athletic association removes ball from soccer

(Steve DePolo/FLICKR)

(Steve DePolo/FLICKR)

Listen 4:13

With the growing concern over the effects of competition in youth sports programs this summer, many Canadian soccer associations eliminated the concept of keeping score. The Soccer Association of Midlake, Ontario, however, has taken this idea one step further, and have completely removed the ball from all youth soccer games and practices.

According to Association spokesperson, Helen Dabney-Coyle, "By removing the ball, it's absolutely impossible to say 'this team won' and 'this team lost' or 'this child is better at soccer than that child.'"

"We want our children to grow up learning that sport is not about competition, rather it's about using your imagination. If you imagine you're good at soccer, then, you are."

This summer Peter Oldring spent time with the Midlake Thundercats, an under 11 boys and girls team, and put together this radio documentary.