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  1. #1
    Registered User titanNC's Avatar
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    Should I let my 8 year old son play tackle football this fall?

    Sign ups are starting soon for our local fall youth football (American) teams. My son has played flag football for the last 2 seasons and is asking to play tackle this fall. I am just not sure an 8 year old is ready for tackle football.

    I played tackle football from the age of 9 through my senior season.....for the most part loved it. I think I beat my body up pretty good though. What I would really like to do is find him a solid flag football team/league and let him hone his skills, and I think he has the potential to have some, in FF before he dives into tackle.

    What do you guys think?
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  2. #2
    Registered User jeffaus's Avatar
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    Its always tough when you dont want your kids to get hurt playing a sport. These days most of the kids sports are non contact. I was playing contact sports like most guys my age at 6 or 7. My son was playing contact football at 7. This is just my opinion but I just think the world has become to soft and boys are growing up to be more like girls (having said that, allot of girls are growing up to be more like boys these days). Let boys be boys, if they get a bit scratched up or a few bruises, they will get over it and will learn how to grow into a man. Dont wrap them up in cotton wool. As I said, My opinion.
    pick it up and put it down
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  3. #3
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    Originally Posted by titanNC View Post
    Sign ups are starting soon for our local fall youth football (American) teams. My son has played flag football for the last 2 seasons and is asking to play tackle this fall. I am just not sure an 8 year old is ready for tackle football.

    I played tackle football from the age of 9 through my senior season.....for the most part loved it. I think I beat my body up pretty good though. What I would really like to do is find him a solid flag football team/league and let him hone his skills, and I think he has the potential to have some, in FF before he dives into tackle.

    What do you guys think?
    Most definitely! My son has played full contact football since he was 6 he's 10 now. I am on the board of directors for our North Shore Youth Football league. And if it is with a reputable league they have rules in place so it can be an enjoyable experience. Like with any sport there is risk of injury, but to be honest more of our boys get hurt off the field than on. More injuries happen each year with kids playing around in their back yards. On the field they have their equipment on. Not saying injuries don't happen but not as often as parents think. The most important thing, is to make sure they he keeps hydrated. Make sure he drinks a least two bottles of water prior to practices and games and then make sure he stays hydrated during practices and games. In my experience most kids suffer from dehydration than any other injury. Plus make sure he has a high carb/protein meal at least 1 1/2 hours before a game.
    I think football teaches them self discipline, determination and how to be part of a team. In football it takes the whole team to win not just one individual. Not only that, but the friendships between parents and kids are priceless we all are like one big family, helping each other out and supporting each other during good times and bad.

    My son's league, he's #36



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  4. #4
    Da1UnV bodyhard's Avatar
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    I have 4 boys they played ALL sports growing up, I say yes let him. Its not like he is going up against 13 year olds, the kids there will be his age as well.

    In this day and age the pussyfying of men/boys is f'cking ridicules.
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  5. #5
    Trying 2 B Awesome BuckSpin's Avatar
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    Statistically, if he rides a bike, plays basketball or organized baseball he is far more or as likely to obtain an injury requiring a ER visit than football.

    I've coached youth football. Yes, there are injuries, Yes, it is not a contact sport but a collision sport. That said, I still feel it is far safer than most of the activities kids participate in.

    Most of my issues arouse with concerned moms. Most of these kids played basketball. I used this example:

    Football - covered head to toe in state of the art protective equipment & played on a large grass surface
    Basketball - basically played in one's underwear (shorts/tank top) on a contained solid hardwood floor that they run & jump on
    "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure"
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  6. #6
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    Originally Posted by bodyhard View Post
    In this day and age the pussyfying of men/boys is f'cking ridicules.
    ^^^^THIS^^^^^^

    I LOVE IT LOL BH You always cut through the BS and say it like it is!!!!!!

    Two sayings I am constantly screaming at my boys:

    1. There is NO CRYING in Football !!!!!!
    2. Man UP!!!!

    You have to see the horrified looks I get from some moms. Seriously though what I tell my moms is if you are afraid that your child will get scrapes and bruises then I suggest maybe some gymnastics or fencing. Yeah I know I'm a B*** when it comes to certain things, but I want my sons to grow up to be strong healthy men and not follow me around like mamma's boys.

    Let the flaming begin LOL
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  7. #7
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    Yes, let him play and see if he likes it.

    Hes wearing pads and stuff. Something he wouldnt be doing in flag football. Kids wrestle around all the time anyway so I think it would be fun.
    "To be a warrior is not a simple matter of wishing to be one. It is rather an endless struggle that will go on to the very last moment of our lives. Nobody is born a warrior, in exactly the same way that nobody is born an average man. We make ourselves into one or the other."-- Carlos Castaneda
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  8. #8
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    Originally Posted by fitmom43 View Post
    ^^^^THIS^^^^^^

    I LOVE IT LOL BH You always cut through the BS and say it like it is!!!!!!

    Two sayings I am constantly screaming at my boys:

    1. There is NO CRYING in Football !!!!!!
    2. Man UP!!!!

    You have to see the horrified looks I get from some moms. Seriously though what I tell my moms is if you are afraid that your child will get scrapes and bruises then I suggest maybe some gymnastics or fencing. Yeah I know I'm a B*** when it comes to certain things, but I want my sons to grow up to be strong healthy men and not follow me around like mamma's boys.

    Let the flaming begin LOL
    If you're saying things like that to your children then those horrified looks are justified because that's callous and even debatable as to abusive.
    Exodus 20:12
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  9. #9
    Equipment Geek Mod Wildtim's Avatar
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    ^^^Only a Canadian. [headshake]

    Let him play he'll like it or not.
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  10. #10
    Potentate DaddyR's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by fitmom43 View Post
    ...when it comes to certain things, but I want my sons to grow up to be strong healthy men and not follow me around like mamma's boys.

    Let the flaming begin LOL
    No flaming here!

    All I can say is da*n! If I had boys I would want them to have a mom just like you!
    Overweight and arrogant
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  11. #11
    Registered User dot1's Avatar
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    I am letting my 9 year old play this season, his mom was not for it. I played all sports all of my life and he is a good little athlete so why not. I would be more concerned if he did not want to play!
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  12. #12
    Registered User quicksand jesus's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by fitmom43 View Post
    ^^^^THIS^^^^^^

    I LOVE IT LOL BH You always cut through the BS and say it like it is!!!!!!

    Two sayings I am constantly screaming at my boys:

    1. There is NO CRYING in Football !!!!!!
    2. Man UP!!!!

    You have to see the horrified looks I get from some moms. Seriously though what I tell my moms is if you are afraid that your child will get scrapes and bruises then I suggest maybe some gymnastics or fencing. Yeah I know I'm a B*** when it comes to certain things, but I want my sons to grow up to be strong healthy men and not follow me around like mamma's boys.

    Let the flaming begin LOL
    If you are afraid of scrapes and bruises then DON'T let him do gymnastics. He will be safer playing tackle football.
    COYS!

    Jason Dufner fan!
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  13. #13
    Scared ****less eomrat's Avatar
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    Absolutely let him play.
    "I'd rather go down the river with seven studs than with a hundred shytheads"
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  14. #14
    Registered User paolo59's Avatar
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    Organized children's sports, little league, all are great, as long as their focus is fun! Kids can indeed learn life skills, good sportsmanship, the importance of team effort. They can as well get burned out and fed up at an early age. This is not the result of their teammates, or their chosen sport, but rather the crazy assed adults who don't recognize that little league soccer, football, softball, hockey, you name it, is a game, to be enjoyed, win or lose. Parents at little league can be pretty damned scary at times!
    paolo59

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  15. #15
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    It is more important that a child learns that his/her choices have consequences, both positive and negative, that fall squarely on their shoulders, than the pros and cons of football, per se. Therefore, I'd say yes, if he wants to.

    Rather than encourage or discourage, I'd recommend objectively presenting both sides for him to consider.
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  16. #16
    sudo apt-get beer SP1966's Avatar
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    YES! Unless it interferes with Hockey season!
    "However widespread the desire to be free, it is wholly different from a desire to live in a society where others are free."

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  17. #17
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    Originally Posted by Do_Somethin View Post
    If you're saying things like that to your children then those horrified looks are justified because that's callous and even debatable as to abusive.
    Nope I am not abusive at all, I shower my children with love and affection. BUT I am not raising girls I am raising boys, I will not tolerate any whiny sissy behavior from my sons end of story. If they chose not to play a sport that is fine I totally support their decision not to, on the other hand if they chose to do so they will not whine and cry because they are tired or they lost a game or they scraped their elbows.

    See that is the problem with today's society you are coddling your children to much.
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  18. #18
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    Originally Posted by paolo59 View Post
    Organized children's sports, little league, all are great, as long as their focus is fun! Kids can indeed learn life skills, good sportsmanship, the importance of team effort. They can as well get burned out and fed up at an early age. This is not the result of their teammates, or their chosen sport, but rather the crazy assed adults who don't recognize that little league soccer, football, softball, hockey, you name it, is a game, to be enjoyed, win or lose. Parents at little league can be pretty damned scary at times!
    Agree 100% some parents act as if it was the NFL. In our league we parents have to sign a form that states we will at all times show sportsman like behavior. If not we get tossed off the field. Trust me they have 0 tolerance.
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    Originally Posted by fitmom43 View Post
    ^^^^THIS^^^^^^

    I LOVE IT LOL BH You always cut through the BS and say it like it is!!!!!!

    Two sayings I am constantly screaming at my boys:

    1. There is NO CRYING in Football !!!!!!
    2. Man UP!!!!

    You have to see the horrified looks I get from some moms. Seriously though what I tell my moms is if you are afraid that your child will get scrapes and bruises then I suggest maybe some gymnastics or fencing. Yeah I know I'm a B*** when it comes to certain things, but I want my sons to grow up to be strong healthy men and not follow me around like mamma's boys.

    Let the flaming begin LOL
    Most excellent post!!

    Originally Posted by Do_Somethin View Post
    If you're saying things like that to your children then those horrified looks are justified because that's callous and even debatable as to abusive.
    Life isn't a bunch of rainbows Joe!

    Originally Posted by quicksand jesus View Post
    If you are afraid of scrapes and bruises then DON'T let him do gymnastics. He will be safer playing tackle football.
    LOL! If they play like the Lions there will be no tackling!!
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  20. #20
    Mr Flexy's Happy Protégé LisaSkinnoble's Avatar
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    I don't know anything about football.

    But I know hockey. Great arguments occur about what age kids should be allowed to check. It starts up here at about age 12 (slightly younger if they are advanced players). Some still think that's too young. But the rationale is, we need to teach our kids when they're young how to give a safe clean hit, and more importantly, how to take a hit in order to minimize injury.

    I would think they do something similar in football? Teach them how to fall and land when they're going down in a tackle?

    I haven't seen many tears in hockey. Our coaches are clever: when a kid goes down, and he's got that look on his face as though he's going to wail, the coaches will skate over and say something funny like, "Hey! Don't break my ice!" Before you know it, the kid is laughing and up and skating again. Keeps the fun in the game.
    No drama: You know where we are.

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    I'm not a father, and pretty young to be giving my opinion; but if I had an 8 year-old, I'd probably let him play. I know I always wanted to at that age, and it will probably do him good.
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    Originally Posted by LisaSkinnoble View Post
    I don't know anything about football.

    But I know hockey. Great arguments occur about what age kids should be allowed to check. It starts up here at about age 12 (slightly younger if they are advanced players). Some still think that's too young. But the rationale is, we need to teach our kids when they're young how to give a safe clean hit, and more importantly, how to take a hit in order to minimize injury.

    I would think they do something similar in football? Teach them how to fall and land when they're going down in a tackle?

    I haven't seen many tears in hockey. Our coaches are clever: when a kid goes down, and he's got that look on his face as though he's going to wail, the coaches will skate over and say something funny like, "Hey! Don't break my ice!" Before you know it, the kid is laughing and up and skating again. Keeps the fun in the game.
    Excellent Post!!! Wish I could rep you but I'm done for 24 hours LOL I will make sure to do so when the time is up! You are so right a huge part of a child success is the coaches they have.
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    Originally Posted by DanielBeauchamp View Post
    if I had an 8 year-old,
    You'd have been one virile mf'ing 10 year old.

    -=FLEX=-
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    Originally Posted by fitmom43 View Post
    Two sayings I am constantly screaming at my boys:

    1. There is NO CRYING in Football !!!!!!
    2. Man UP!!!!
    Gonna politely disagree here....

    After a lost championship game I had a last team huddle of the season full of 10-12 year old with broken hearts & they were man enough to let their love for each other flow....

    I've seen a 10 year old not 10 minutes into his 1st pre-season conditioning practice in tears as his legs & lungs burned from hill sprints, yet he didn't quit as his teammates came to his side & ran with him as he pushed himself further than he ever thought he could......all as his dad sat helpless and silently watched him turn from a boy into a young man in front of his eyes.....

    I've had to console a player, a team captain, one of the toughest kids on the team, sob to me as he confessed that kids on the other team called him the "N" word.....and he had the stones to take the high road.....

    I've seen 2 18 year olds walk the length of their home field, arm in arm, crying their ^%$#@! eyes out as their high school (and football) careers had just ended minutes before with a hard fought, come from behind victory......and I was not the least bit embarrassed at that moment when it hit me like a ton of bricks a part of my life was over forever....

    So you my want to rethink screaming that 1st one because someday there will come a moment on a football field where your boy will have a &^%$#@! damn good reason to cry & he shouldn't have to worry about what you or others might think about him.....
    "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure"
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    Originally Posted by BuckSpin View Post
    Gonna politely disagree here....

    After a lost championship game I had a last team huddle of the season full of 10-12 year old with broken hearts & they were man enough to let their love for each other flow....

    I've seen a 10 year old not 10 minutes into his 1st pre-season conditioning practice in tears as his legs & lungs burned from hill sprints, yet he didn't quit as his teammates came to his side & ran with him as he pushed himself further than he ever thought he could......all as his dad sat helpless and silently watched him turn from a boy into a young man in front of his eyes.....

    I've had to console a player, a team captain, one of the toughest kids on the team, sob to me as he confessed that kids on the other team called him the "N" word.....and he had the stones to take the high road.....

    I've seen 2 18 year olds walk the length of their home field, arm in arm, crying their ^%$#@! eyes out as their high school (and football) careers had just ended minutes before with a hard fought, come from behind victory......and I was not the least bit embarrassed at that moment when it hit me like a ton of bricks a part of my life was over forever....

    So you my want to rethink screaming that 1st one because someday there will come a moment on a football field where your boy will have a &^%$#@! damn good reason to cry & he shouldn't have to worry about what you or others might think about him.....
    Maybe you didn't read my second post, by crying I mean whining and crying over stupid things. If they are seriously hurt, or lost a championship, that's one thing. And since you have coached teams you of all people should know how some of these parents baby their children to no end. There are different ways to shed tears, some are acceptable and some are not.
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    Originally Posted by FLEXjs View Post
    You'd have been one virile mf'ing 10 year old.

    -=FLEX=-
    Hahaha! Very true.
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    I have a 2 year old son. I don't know if he is going to want to play tackle football when he is 8, but if he did, I would probably let him. Although, admittedly, I would be conflicted. There is definitely a protective part of me that doesn't want to see my son get hurt doing anything. This protective part of me won't let him go anywhere ever. There is also a part of me that wants my son to experience life to the fullest and get to enjoy things in his own way. This part of me will let him do whatever he wants (within reason).

    Ultimately, I think it's important, as a parent, to give your children as much freedom as possible to make their own decisions and just help guide them. Occassionally, we may have to step in and make the decision for our children, but that should be a rare occurrence and should be backed with good reason. Even my 2 year old son gets to make a lot of his own decisions. If he's about to make a bad one, I help him understand why it would be a bad one and usually he understands why and changes his mind. Granted, his decisions usually involve what to eat, where to play, and what to wear...pretty simple, but I think that as he grows and the decisions become more complex, the same logic applies.
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    Originally Posted by fitmom43 View Post
    Maybe you didn't read my second post, by crying I mean whining and crying over stupid things. If they are seriously hurt, or lost a championship, that's one thing. And since you have coached teams you of all people should know how some of these parents baby their children to no end. There are different ways to shed tears, some are acceptable and some are not.
    Well ^^^^ this is a lot different than "There is no crying in football" In fact, this is the exact opposite of that.

    Your first post and most of the ones that followed really had me thinking that you think crying is always unmanly. Maybe I am just not clear what you think are "stupid things".

    I, for one, would rather see a boy or a man cry when he needs to than to suppress all of his emotions. Its my understanding that this whole mentality is very often what leads people to soothe their troubled souls through the use of alcohol and drugs as so many do.

    I could be over reacting. I am sure that your young boys know when it is OK to cry and when it is "stupid". That is usually something we all figure out well before our 12th birthday, even if we do have our primary caregiver screaming "Man Up" at us in front of all our friends.

    I would never try to tell someone how to raise their kids and your children may very well be healthy, happy and well adjusted. I just know that I, for one, would have been humiliated to have my mother screaming "Man up" at me in public.
    Last edited by eomrat; 05-30-2010 at 04:26 PM.
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    Originally Posted by fitmom43 View Post
    Maybe you didn't read my second post, by crying I mean whining and crying over stupid things. If they are seriously hurt, or lost a championship, that's one thing. And since you have coached teams you of all people should know how some of these parents baby their children to no end. There are different ways to shed tears, some are acceptable and some are not.
    Understood. But please explain to that when my starting Mike linebacker, tri-captain & one of the smartest, toughest players I have ever had the privilege to coach came off the field with no apparent injury/etc, walked up next to me & started to cry because of being called one of the ugliest words in the English language.......that you could tell from the stands that this was an "acceptable" time before you yelled?

    I've been on the sidelines & seen the faces and eyes that you can't see from the stands when a parent strands up & screams something like you do/did. Not only is that child mortified & embarrassed beyond words, but all his teammates know who was yelling and will remind him every chance they get about it.

    I'm sorry, but we are gonna have to agree to disagree on this one, no matter where your heart is.
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    Originally Posted by BuckSpin View Post
    Understood. But please explain to that when my starting Mike linebacker, tri-captain & one of the smartest, toughest players I have ever had the privilege to coach came off the field with no apparent injury/etc, walked up next to me & started to cry because of being called one of the ugliest words in the English language.......that you could tell from the stands that this was an "acceptable" time before you yelled?

    I've been on the sidelines & seen the faces and eyes that you can't see from the stands when a parent strands up & screams something like you do/did. Not only is that child mortified & embarrassed beyond words, but all his teammates know who was yelling and will remind him every chance they get about it.

    I'm sorry, but we are gonna have to agree to disagree on this one, no matter where your heart is.
    Really well said. You sound like a great coach.
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