38 answers

Little League Baseball Games and Practice Schedule Going Overboard?

My son is 4, almost 5. He started at the age of 3 in T-ball and this year moved up to coach pitch. The last 2 years in T-ball we had 1 game and 1 practice a week, each lasting approximately 1 hour. This year they started right off with 5 practices a week for at least 2 hours a practice, sometimes more. Now that we have stated games, we practice most nights that we don't have games. We have at least 2 games a week lasting approximately 1 1/2 hour each and are required to be at the field 1 hour before games to "warm-up." Last weekend we had a practice that lasted over 3 hours and I just noticed on the schedule that we have a school night with a double-header. Also, we have 5 games that start at 7:30 on school nights over the next month-month 1/2. I am extremely frustrated. I think this is way too much!

I have tried talking with my husband about it and he thinks I am "babying our son." I think this is too much for this age group. We went from around 2-3 hours a week to at least 10 hours a week.

Opinions please.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

That is way too much...The other parents must be frustrated also. I would get with them and then get with the coach on how you feel. I don't think you are babying him, I think you are being responsible in realizing he needs time for other things, and so do you.

That is an insane amount of time for a child so young. Have you talked to the other children's parents to get their opinion on this schedule?? The other parents might feel the same way as you and it would be easier to confront the coach about reducing the schedule if you have other team parents backing you up.

WAY too much demand on the attention span of anyone...much less a 4 year old. My 16 year old brother plays on the varsity team for his high school and they don't demand that much time. Ridiculous.

More Answers

You are not babying your son in my opinion. He is too young to be going to practices that hard and that often. Let alone the double headers and late games. I love sports but the amount of practicing he does just blows my mind. He is only 4 yrs. old. When does he have time to just be a 4 yr. old? I'd be burn out if I had his schedule! Best wishes keeping your little guy in tact with that schedule.

1 mom found this helpful

That's crazy. I agree with you entirely. Not only are you not babying your son by opting out of this schedule, you're keeping your family's sanity. How can one even cook a healthy meal on that kind of schedule? What about *you*? Does your husband want to take your son to all of these practices and games? If you're the one doing all of the work, maybe that's why your husband doesn't see the problem with it. For one thing, as you're probably noticing, the more stressed you are, the more difficult it will be for you to model calm problem-solving behavior to your son, because you're more stressed.

It also sounds like the program your son is in is very winning-oriented, which can teach kids that nothing is more important than winning - not morals, not friendship, not enjoying life, nothing. This can lead to problems later, like workaholism (take it from the wife of a workaholic who doesn't know how to relax). The point is for a kid to have fun while learning and developing skills, but how is he supposed to have fun or even develop a lot of those skills with that kind of pressure?

I've been doing so much reading on child rearing, and the books that make the most sense to me tell me not to overschedule my family. Kids need down time, away from scheduled activities, TV, and other time fillers or time suckers that don't let kids learn how to be bored and learn how to get through it creatively, or get them out there looking at bugs and tree bark and stuff.

Again, it's not a matter of babying your son. It's a matter of guiding his development in a healthy, balanced (sane!) way. And the other end of the spectrum from babying a child is forcing him to grow up way too fast.

Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

My son is starting his second year of T-ball and he's done soccer for two years. He's four. They practice or have games just twice a week and it last 45mins to an hour. My friends son was in coach pitch last year (age 8) and his schedule was the same. With our League, it is a league decision how much they practice. Not that the coach couldn't call for more, but they usually don't. I can't even imagine going as often as you are, especially not with other children at home. It really does seem excesive to me. Even if your son is really talented, he's still really young, and even talented people can get burned out.

What do other teams in your league do? Most practices last one hour, however, baseball and football practices and games can consume TONS of time and if you are here in the South where I am (AL), it is always about the practices and games. You just have to get used to it and make LOTS of friends in the ball-park, because that's where you'll be all the time. The kids love it and they make lots of friends also. Just sit, relax and cheer him on. Those years will pass quickly and he'll appreciate your support. If he doesn't enjoy it or it interupts his school studies (in a few years), stop and try a sport through your local YMCA which is usually one practice per week and one game on a Saturday.

WAY too much demand on the attention span of anyone...much less a 4 year old. My 16 year old brother plays on the varsity team for his high school and they don't demand that much time. Ridiculous.

My friends son is 7 and playing baseball. Even at 7, they only practice once a week for 1 hour and have one game a week. You are absolutely right about your son. I can't imagine putting a 4 yr. old on that rigorous of a schedule. I couldn't handle that kind of schedule myself, especially during the school year. You need to have a serious talk with his coach and if the problem doesn't resolve, maybe you can put him on another team.

That is way too much...The other parents must be frustrated also. I would get with them and then get with the coach on how you feel. I don't think you are babying him, I think you are being responsible in realizing he needs time for other things, and so do you.

Their pratices vary depending on the coach. Coach sets pratice schedules, not the league. As far as the games, you can take it to the person in charge of that League or find another league. I agree that is way too much on a child or a parent. It really takes the fun out of the game and burns the kids out to the point they don't even want to play anymore. Sounds to me like his coach is Very competitive, he is prolly a coach that yells at them & embarasses the boys cause he calls them out individually, I've seen coaches like this and I'm grateful my son has yet to be placed on one of their teams. I hope you get things worked out.

1 / 3
Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.