I had a great experience today having been invited to the Viera Charter School, a K-8 school school in my community of Viera Florida. From 8:30 AM through 2 PM, with the support of the school’s PE teachers, I ran instructional clinics for class after class today.
Introducing the game of lacrosse to kids that have never experienced it before never ceases to be a source of enjoyment for me. The newness of the experience almost always makes for a very attentive audience. The smiles and clear expressions of triumph as they successfully complete skills speaks for itself.
For those of us that long ago experienced the draw of the game, it begins to sound cliche when we constantly say that the game sells itself, but it really is true, the game sells itself. All one needs to do is take the time to introduce the sticks and concepts to the kids, and their interest is instantly piqued. Throw in a few fun games and relays that bring some competition into the reinforcement of basic skills, and it seals the deal.
The next challenge lies in the open mindedness of the parent to allow their child to participate in a sport that is unfamiliar to them. Some may even view it as a threat to an existing more traditional sport that they prefer their child to participate in. I believe that the age of the internet and all of the information that is now at our disposal to some degree, helps us that endeavor to grow the fame in drawing new families to lacrosse. I know that if either of my children came home begging me to sign them up for something I have never heard of, before I would consider it, I would at least “Google” the activity to get more information.
In the case of lacrosse, a simple Google search provides pages of links about the game, from youth through high school, college and professional lacrosse.
I will be crossing my fingers and toes that the kids I won over today on on their desire to sign up for my spring 2017 youth lacrosse league, will be successful in either selling the sport to their parents, or at least make a big enough fuss that their parents will be unable to say no.
Regardless of the outcome, I feel great about how I spent my day today!
Dr. Roger Welton was a 4 year starter for Montclair State University and was selected as a First Team All Knickerbocker Conference Midfielder in 1995, 1996. He is the founder of the Viera-Suntree Lacrosse Club and Space Coast Elite Lacrosse Club in Brevard County, Florida.