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Episode Info: Participate in and support the show at https://thesoccersidelines.comMany Support Options to help me promote what really matters in Youth Sports here: Voice Feedback or Connect with me via email or social media here: Whether you’re thinking about attending your first travel tournament, have already attended travel tournaments, or are just exploring the idea to see if they are right for you and your family, there are several issues worth considering. From personal experience, there is definitely good and bad. No matter where you fall on the issues, I’d love to hear your thoughts. My son and I just got back from three days on the road and we returned with all the tournament championship bling. In this episode, I’ll share our experience, some of the issues our friends and colleagues from The Soccer Sidelines community had to say, and some of the things you should think about before climbing into the car for your next one.  What Are the Issues With Travel Tournaments Let’s start with the positive. Travel tournaments are fun. Soccer is fun. Competition is fun. Getting some sun in an open space, making fun of crazy people amped up with adrenaline, eating crappy road food, vacuuming the latest turf filler from your car… Ahem. Well… they are fun! I haven’t heard anyone say that playing lots of soccer isn’t fun yet. The question that comes up frequently is usually some variation of a “too much” theme. For example: Are tournaments too expensive? Do tournaments take up too much time? Are tournaments too much strain on young bodies?  Are tournaments too far away? Are these tournaments too much professionalization of youth sports and detracting from the youth development experience?  All of these questions are legitimate to ask, right? After comparing notes with some of my European friends and running some numbers on the back of my virtual napkin, I’d have to agree that asking questions like these is probably a good idea no matter who you are. The answers to them depends on what we can do about what we find when we ask.  In this episode, I’m going to share with you the experience that my son and I just had this past weekend. He played four games in two days. We drove 3+ hours each way. We came home with medals, the tournament champion trophy, and a bunch of fun photos and memories. I’ll also share what I might want to see done differently in tournaments in the future, as well as a few things that you can do to help make sure that your player(s) go prepared and come home without injury.  Please: support the show and join our community as a Patron through my Patreon page The Travel Tournament Experience The typical travel tournament experience starts with an email from a coach or a team manager explaining that there is X tournament in Y location on A, B, C dates. Who’s interested? Once interest is confirmed and fees are paid, then we start the proce...
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