Flag Football

flag-footballMy 8-year-old son Stephen is playing flag football for the first time this year. It’s a Christian-based program called Upward Sports, it only lasts 8 weeks, and it has one practice per week. This makes it a good fit for homeschoolers, who don’t want their lives taken over by sports.

Before the game on Saturday, the boys line up and run through a tunnel when their name is called. Music plays over the speakers, and a big hoopla is made as everyone cheers for each kid. The boys then run to their field, where the team huddles together and prays before the game. Being a mom, I also like the fact that it’s not tackle football. Instead of tackling, the opposing team pulls off a plastic flag from your kid’s side, making a fun popping sound. The kids each have a wrist band that explains many different plays, so each boy knows what they’re supposed to do.

Why spend 8 weeks playing football? For your kid not be a dork when he is in college or beyond, and the guys invite him over to watch the Super Bowl. Part of having a full education is understanding many aspects of life, including not being completely clueless about football. It’s also good exercise, and the boys learn teamwork. (It’s hard for me to say all of this because I’ve always hated sports, and I have no idea how football is played. All I hear is “blah, blah, second down, blah, blah,” whatever that means. I understand what a touchdown is, and I understand which direction they’re supposed to be going. Otherwise it just looks like a random swarm of bees to me.)

If you plan to put your boy into flag football, I recommend that your husband teach him how to throw and catch the ball, since his entire success as a player depends on it. If your kid is a complete klutz, you might just spend a year or so throwing and catching the ball before putting him in.

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