Youth sports were a big part of my life starting with little league baseball. My mom who had no special interest in baseball, was stuck having to cart me around to practices, the local sports supply store for new gear, and all the games! Not to mention, she was there with me during my significant baseball card collection building phase and some of my earliest entrepreneurial endeavors, all those baseball card shows where I’d setup a booth and try to sell as many cards as possible!
Moms all dads around the country invest a lot of time into youth sports for their kids. Some do it as a way to relive their glory days through their children while others, like my mother, do it to make their kids happy. No matter the reason adults get involved in youth sports, it’s a huge business. Our little league teams always had sponsors to help assist with league and uniform fees. Most sponsors were local small businesses that either had children of the owners involved or simply liked sponsoring youth sports.
My daughter picked up the game of basketball a little over a year ago. At first, I was the dad simply driving her to practices and cheering her on during games. Not knowing as much about basketball as I did about playing baseball and managing an adult baseball team, I was in for a significant learning experience. There were many more options for basketball than there were for baseball during my youth years. There are developmental leagues like i9, to local private leagues, to AAU teams and related organizations that field tournament club teams, select and elite teams, to jr. high school basketball. Not only that, the best basketball players are getting individual and group training outside of team practice and game play. The options are overwhelming and for the more advanced teams and training options, it can get expensive!
After learning a significant amount about basketball from watching other coaches, researching on my own and being an involved parent of a youth sports player, I took things a step further by coaching girls basketball. During college, I played a lot of pickup basketball in the baseball offseason with the football, baseball and other athletes nearly everyday. However, I’ve learned more in just over a year than I did in my previous lifetime casually following the sport. Teaching the game has accelerated my learning because you have to know the drills, moves and have the skills to show youth how to perform during game situations.
Seeing how both, for profit, and non profit basketball organizations operated, there is certainly a lot of room for improvement. Some organizations are designed to churn and burn through as many players as possible while failing to develop individual skills, while other organizations attempt to get all players equal playing time, but not preparing the better players for a higher level of play.
Developing players and providing them with skills both on and off the court is an essential part of driving youth to become better individuals and better performing team players which is a major requirement to succeeding in a career.
That’s why BannerView.com is doing just that through BV Basketball. Taking the good and trying to avoid the bad of other youth girls basketball programs, BV Basketball is a jr. high aged basketball team designed to build better basketball players through competitive play, but most importantly provide these young up and coming athletes with valuable skills both on and off the court. The team will compete with AAU and Club teams in the local Katy, TX (Houston) area.
No matter the reason for getting involved with youth sports teams (coaching or sponsoring), business owners and entrepreneurs can feel good about it since it’s a way to provide significant local community benefits while helping youth build lifelong skills through sports. Most of my time is spent as CEO fo the company I founded, but like everyone, outside hobbies are necessary to provide balance. Coaching or sponsoring youth sports provides a way to combine both the business and hobby side creating a unique combination that can energize a business both inside and out. Plus, you may be surprised to see how employees react and want to get involved as well.
|About the author
Mark Cenicola is the president and CEO of BannerView.com, developers of BannerOS, the software that helps companies turn their websites into powerful business tools. Mark is also the author of the book "The Banner Brand – Small Business Success Comes from a Banner Brand – Build it on a Budget." Read Mark's full biography. You can find him tweeting on Twitter and starring in videos for the company's YouTube channel.
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