Free Essay - Until It Hurts: America's Obsession With Youth Sports

Published: 2023-03-15
Free Essay - Until It Hurts: America's Obsession With Youth Sports
Type of paper:  Book review
Categories:  United States Sport Child development Books
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 652 words
6 min read

The book Until It Hurts: America's Obsession with Youth Sports and How It Harms Our Kids, by Mark Hyman (2009) discloses the problematic state of youth sports in America. Hyman is a journalist, sports coach, and sports father. In the book, he talked about the Little League World Series and the Chicago Super Club where coached golf and tennis respectively. Hyman's work examined the health hazards and risks that exist when families and communities over-emphasize sports for children. Hyman's thesis is that playing sports is naturally good for children and rewarding but being highly invested in it is detrimental to the health and wellbeing of the children.

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Hyman (2009) begins the book by talking about his son, Ben Hyman, who is a sport's athlete. According to him, he was a volunteer parent during his son's sports league and watched him play even though he had complained of shoulder pain. In the book, Hyman provided a confession of how he, just like other sports parents, was fixated on his son being the ideal athlete. He wrote about having his son, Ben, pitch in a baseball game despite being injured and complaining of shoulder pains. He wrote that in one of his son's games, he watched him play with remorse and regret as his injured son attempted to please him. He added that in the evening when the match was over, he was disappointed in himself because he had to watch his son perform despite the pain he had.

Hyman argued that adult's presence in youth sports is not the issue interfering with youth sports. According to him, it is the adult's impulse to turn children's sports into an effective professional league. Besides, the book touched on eating habits, injuries, and anabolic steroid use, which affects sports children negatively. Hyman made it known that the issue of sports culture and the fixation on athletics pushes children to the point where it is unpleasant and detrimental to their health and wellbeing. According to Hyman, the obsession fails to become just a game but rather a business, and guardians that frequently see sports activities as an assured pass for their children to get scholarships. Hyman implied that parents fail to understand the disadvantages of pushing their children too hard to excel in sports.

By reading the book, any sports parent and athlete would see themselves in all the chapters, including the writer, Hyman, who modestly shares his fixation on his child's baseball playing days. Hyman carefully inquired about his point and offered his notes on his findings he had with interviews from specialists, sports guardians, and Olympic competitors. The outcomes of Hyman's research on sports in children are astonishing. Regarding the issue of parent's pressurizing their children to play sports for scholarships, Hymen's research found that 65% of athletes on Division I and III groups state gaining practical experience in one game was not important to play in school and that sports scholarships if fortunate, spread just 15% of school educational cost and everyday expenses. Also, Hymen's research on college athletes established that focusing one game at an early age does not improve the odds of sports accomplishment in secondary school years. This research only shows that parents put unnecessary pressure on their children to be invested in sports without considering the long-term adverse effects it has on their children.

Sports is a high-pressure game for both children and parents. Athletes too need to understand their bodies and avoid playing games in case they have injuries. Hyman concluded his book by praising inspirational parents and ideal sports programs for avoiding to put pressure on children to play sports. Besides, he gives hope that the current damaging cycle of youth sports can be broken. Overall, the book is inspirational and educational for sports children, sports agencies, and their parents and guardians.


Hyman, M. (2009). Until it hurts: America's obsession with youth sports and how it harms our kids. Boston: Beacon Press.

Cite this page

Free Essay - Until It Hurts: America's Obsession With Youth Sports. (2023, Mar 15). Retrieved from

Request Removal

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the SpeedyPaper website, please click below to request its removal:

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism