Is Travel Softball Worth it? Here are the Pros and Cons
If you are thinking of considering enrolling your child in the unique and exciting experience of travel softball, or wondering if travel softball is worth it, you have landed in the right place because we want to help you make this huge decision.
Travel softball is one of the best ways for your child to improve her gameplay– but that’s not all that comes along with it. There are countless advantages softball players can reap from being a part of such an experience.
However, before you hastily sign up, you need to know what to expect for you, your family, and your child. We have created an extensive list of pros and cons of joining travel softball, including purchasing the expensive yet important gear, like youth softball bats, to the unequivocal camaraderie and emotional growth.
What is Travel Softball?
Travel softball (often referred to as “club softball” as well) is a competitive softball league where teams from different areas compete against each other. This is considered the next “step up” from recreational softball. It is more intensive in skill level, amount of commitment, and amount of playtime.
There are varying distances teams travel along with age groups depending on the program. Some teams only travel to compete with nearby communities or across the country.
The Pros and Cons
In order to best help you make this decision, we advise you to first not only rely on the words of parents who chose to or chose not to have their child join travel softball. Every child is different, as is every family, so you will need to base your decision on your own unique family and child.
Alongside this consideration, you should also be aware of the many pros and cons of your daughter joining club softball.
Pros of Travel Softball
●Camaraderie and Friendship
The level of team-building and camaraderie in travel softball is unmatchable. This is because your daughter will spend a ton of time with her teammates during practices, games, traveling, and even hotel stays. Your daughter will learn some key social skills as well as potentially make life-long friends!
●Improved Emotional Intelligence
Travel softball not only improves social skills but also emotional intelligence and self-awareness. Playing any sport is a means of balancing humility and confidence. Players experience moments of beaming self-pride along with more embarrassing moments.
During this experience, they will learn a lot about themselves, learn how to handle stress, make sacrifices for the good of their team, and overall gain some serious life experience.
●Learn Time Management Skills
Travel ball requires a lot of free time but also teaches players how to properly balance it along with school, other extracurricular activities, family, and social life. Because of this, they learn valuable time management skills they can utilize throughout their lives.
Proper physical exercise is key for all people, including children and teenagers. When your child is involved in travel softball, they will be getting a lot of physical exercise, which will make their bodies significantly stronger and healthier.
●Improve Softball Skills
Since travel ball players play the sport more often than they would in rec ball, they will vastly improve their gameplay!
●Experience New Places and Meet New People
Traveling to new and exciting places can lead to a more well-rounded understanding of the world around us and to a more generally open mind.
The Cons of Travel Softball
One of the biggest drawbacks of travel softball is the hefty price tag. The price of paying for a year of travel softball could be anywhere from $500 to $5,000.
This price includes dues, uniform(s), and some pieces of equipment (if they are provided, which happens most times). However, this price may not include some pretty expensive items, like other important gear (like youth softball bats, which can cost about $300 roughly), hotel stays, gas, restaurant bills, sports drinks, and other miscellaneous purchases.
Playing in travel softball requires major sacrifices, including your time. There are varying amounts of practices per week, tournaments and games almost every weekend, a lot of traveling to both practices and games, and even time needed for private lessons.
●Added Stress to the Player and Player’s Family
With any large change in a person’s life, tacking on travel softball could lead to a lot of stress– for both the player and the entire family. There is also the likelihood of not getting the experience you wanted, like not getting along with the players or coach, not as much game time and more bench time, etc.
●The “Travel” in “Travel Softball” Is No Joke
There is a reason it is referred to as “travel” softball. There is indeed a lot of travel involved with playing and that can take a toll on a lot of people who don’t like traveling or already have a very busy schedule.
One of the biggest steps you need to take when joining a travel softball team is to get the right equipment if it isn’t supplied to you by the organization you choose. Be sure to browse our youth softball bats, helmets, apparel, and various other pieces of equipment to make the travel softball experience the best imaginable!
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