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Played by more than thirty million boys and girls across the country, youth sports have turned from a casual activity for kids into a fanatical forcean intense, expensive, elitist rite of passage driven by the needs of impatient (if often well-meaning) adults. In Game On, award-winning ESPN reporter Tom Farrey explores the causes and consequences of our obsession with early success in sports. The effort to sort the strong from the weak at ever-younger ages, Farrey argues, pushes too many children to the sidelinesand ultimately undermines the quality of U.S. national teams. Weve conscripted our kids into a sports arms race in which individual performance trumps participation and personal growth. To counter the effects of a win-at-all-costs culture, Farrey suggests measures that can help parentsand communitiesget children off the couch without running them into the ground.
Much as Fast Food Nation challenged our eating habits and Outliers encouraged us to think in new ways about high achievers, Game On will change the way we look at the critically important games that American kids play.