Benefits and Risks of Youth Sports

Youth Baseball PlayersFootball can cause concussions and other injuries. However, it’s still a very popular sport for both kids and adults. But what do parents think of their kid’s sports? What are the benefits and risks of youth sports?

Many parents dislike the idea of tackle football and instead have their kids play flag football. This is a safer version of football where, instead of players tackling other players, the goal is to yank a ‘flag’ that’s attached to the clothing of other players. But when the child moves to tackle football, parents are reluctant to take them out. They don’t want to ‘hold their child back’, even if the game is painful.

A few experienced football players take almost the opposite stance. They love football, and as Dallas Clark explains, ‘he’d do it all over again.’ Even with all the injuries football players receive, they can’t get away from the game. However, according to a poll done by, some football veterans are completely against having their own kids risk football. Dozens of football players were asked if they would allow their own kids to play the sport. Several said that they were too worried about the injuries that players receive to ever allow their children to participate in football. Will these polls and statistics affect how many people play the game?

Youth sports have many benefits, and there’s plenty of reasons to give thanks for them and the dedicated people who make youth sports possible. From the coaches who give their time to guide children, to the guy in the concession stand selling – or giving out – hot dogs and soft drinks, we appreciate all the hard work of these people. Read the many reasons to give thanks for youth sports in Jon Buzby’s article.

Garden Plaques

Garden SignsOver the years customers have requested we produce garden plaques or small signs they can place in their gardens or yards. After doing some research into the types of products we could make that would fit the bill, we decided on some nice, simple engraved signs that are attached to strong, wire that can be placed in the ground. They are weather proof and hold up well in the outdoors – even weather conditions as harsh as those we experience in MarquetteGarden signs.

They come in two shapes: square with rounded corners and ovals. They also come in 2 sizes, small or large. The small garden plaques are mounted on wire stakes 10″ long and the large garden plaques are mounted on wire stakes 15″ long. All wires are galvanized steel so they will not rust.

These garden plaques make great gifts for the casual yard gardener, are great for public spaces such as church yards where you want to recognize volunteer gardeners, or in areas where you want to identify the plants found there.

Parents: Spend Free Time on Sports

A recent survey revealed that forty six percent of parents think children should spend free time on sports. Less than twenty percent would rather their children spend their time on academic activities.

The survey garnered the responses of a thousand parents who have children aged 6 to 15. The scope of the survey was concentrating on mathematics and the impact it has on future success. About half of the parents believed that excelling in mathematics is important for doing well in later life, while a meager five percent opted for being good in sports.

The disparity goes to show that parents remain realistic that the odds of their child doing well in professional sports are rather slim, so doing well academically is still most important for succeeding in life.

However, the good news is that the survey goes to show that the United States stands a better chance of curbing the increasing rate of childhood obesity with many parents understanding the value of sports for their children. While schools have an influence on a child’s weight by instilling the importance of exercise and a healthy diet, parents need to play their part by encouraging  the same values too.

Nearly half of parents who took part in a survey think that it is best that their children spend their free time on sports. 18 percent prefer that their children engage in intellectual or educational activities. However, most parents realize that a professional sports career is only viable for a given few, and hence rank being good at mathematics and having an outgoing personality as important traits for success in life, as reported by Bryan Toporek.

In this article by Cathy O’Connor, alarming statistics were revealed regarding the physical activity level of Canadian kids. Only 7% of children and teenagers meet the guidelines of at least an hour of physical activity per day. Tips were also mentioned on how to raise active kids and integrating physical activity into their daily lives.

Coaches That Yell

No matter if you’re at a little league game or a college football game, there always seems to be one thing in common, there are always coaches that yell at the players! Most coaches seem to use yelling as a hope for the players to listen and do what they say, meaning that they would hopefully be playing better. However, does yelling really ever work?

Warren Grymes at describes his experiences with being a player himself, turned coach. Growing up playing sports, he was used to coaches that yell at the athletes. At the time, he hadn’t really thought much about it. Years later after becoming a coach himself, he had adopted the same yelling strategy. Even as he coached his son’s team, the yelling stuck. Finally, while coaching his grandson’s team, he reflected back on what worked for him the best in any team he had been on back in the day, and quickly realized that it wasn’t having a coach screaming at him. The football coaches that he had in his freshman and sophomore years of high school had been motivational, supportive, and didn’t get mad or yell when something didn’t go the way they wanted. This resulted in a team that worked together well, trusted in their coaches, and earned a undefeated season. Once their junior year came, new coaches were introduced. They weren’t supportive, were not motivational, and liked to yell a lot. Needless to say, this resulted in a lot of losses and resentment toward the coaches.

Perhaps it’s time that we take a look at our coaching system and make a ruling. Why is it OK to have coaches that yell at their players when teachers are not allowed to scream at their students and  employers do not shout at their employees?

QuickTrophy and Picasso

QuickTrophy and PicassoIn Paris, on the corner of Rue Bonaparte and Rue de l’Abbaye, next to the church of St. Germaine des Pres, there is a little park with benches and pieces of the church dating back to the middle ages. Along with the old artifacts, there is a piece of modern sculpture by Pablo Picasso. A real honest to goodness Picasso! It is “Homage to Apollinaire” – a tribute to his friend, the poet Guillaume Apolllinaire.

QuickTrophy was there for a visit this past summer to take in the sites, eat some of the best chocolate in the world and walk around in this city of style and culture where you can find a Picasso sculpture just tucked into a little out of the way park. I couldn’t resist a picture with QuickTrophy and Picasso.

World Record Tallest Trophy

In April of 2011, QuickTrophy built the world record tallest trophy. The trophy stands at 22 feet, 6 1/2 inches tall! It was recognized by Guinness World Records in March of 2012 and it is currently housed at the Superior Dome on the campus of Northern MWorld Record Tallest Trophyichigan University in Marquette, Michigan.

The man standing next to the trophy is Chuck Bavis, a sales representative for JDS Industries. What makes this picture interesting is that Chuck is a 7 foot, former basketball player! As you can see in the picture, he would need to duck to get through the door next to him! This gives you some idea of how large the trophy is.

If you are ever in Marquette, Michigan, it is worth a stop to see! Stop in at “The Dome” and see the World Record Tallest Trophy.

Behind the Trophies

Schools, camps, and organizations award children whenever they accomplish something worth celebrating. These include anything from getting straight A’s at school, winning in football, emerging a champion in a spelling bee, or graduating as a valedictorian. Rewarding the students can be in the form of a trophy, a plaque, a medal, a certificate, or probably all of these. There is pride behind the trophies and awards: Children feel good when their families, friends, and teachers are proud of them. They become proud of themselves, too, and gain confidence – an attribute that is very important in real life.

Speaking of real life – children may not notice this (at least at first) but these awards are more than concrete proof that they have done good in school, or in sports, or somewhere else. Many kids strive to be their best in the things that they do so that they can receive the recognition. In the long run, this motivation leads to greater things. The children learn more important things like discipline, teamwork, perseverance, self-confidence, hard work, and many other values which are essential even when they grow up into adults.

In some cases, specific lessons are also at the backseat when immersing kids into an activity and giving them motivation to finish the task. A good example of this is the small garden project of a few students – a project which not only gave them a big trophy, but also taught them the skill of gardening and growing crops, as well as the importance of keeping a healthy lifestyle. As the kids learned more about cooking their own food, they have been exposed to the fun that is associated with healthy eating. Read more about this life lesson from Chris Gee’s report.

QuickTrophy Mission Statement

For months we have worked on a QuickTrophy mission statement that truly reflects why QuickTrophy exist as a company – why we come into work each day – what we hope to accomplish as a team. Finally, we have something we want to share:

QuickTrophy Mission Statement

We Build Pride. We are the fastest provider of awards and recognition products in the U.S. We strive to make all our customers feel like we know them personally and appreciate them with our superlative customer service and easy to use web sites. We custom build each order, working quickly, accurately, and as a team. We constantly introduce new products to satisfy our customer’s needs and to keep our product selection unique.

QuickTrophy Mission Statement

QuickTrophy Zamboni

Anyone who has ever been to a hockey game has probably seen a Zamboni Ice Resurfacing Machine – usually referred to as just a Zamboni. Over 10,000 of these units have been sold world wide to help keep the surface of ice skating and hockey rinks smooth. Invented by Frank Zamboni in Los Angeles in 1949, these awesome units have been built and sold by the Zamboni Company ever since.

And if you can’t own a Zamboni, maybe at least you can sponsor one. QuickTrophy has teamed up with Northern Lights Arena in Alpena, Michigan to sponsor one of their Zamboni Ice Resurfacing machines: The QuickTrophy Zamboni. How cool is that?

QuickTrophy Zamboni

Olympians That Don’t Medal

Every four years, the best athletes from all over the world converge into the biggest sporting event. All eyes are on these athletes as they compete and give their best for their countries and for themselves. When they emerge victorious, their families, friends and supporters from their countries celebrate their success and herald them as modern heroes. Everybody has a great time, and the winners make their mark in the legacy of their chosen field or sport. They make a name for themselves and make their nations proud.

What happens the Olympians that don’t medal? Nobody ever seems to notice the athletes who have failed to put themselves on the Olympic pedestal, especially when the event is all done and people move on with their lives. Sure, they can compete in another four years’ time, but what happens until then? This should not be a question for the more popular athletes, like those who have reached celebrity status – especially those who come from America. Making money would be as easy as posing for some commercial or advocating for a sponsor, a brand, a product. It all seems like they are having the time of their lives.

For the non-champions and those who have not had even a single endorsement, there is no other way to go but to return to their normal lives, whatever that may entail. It may be an office job, running a business, going back to school, or being with one’s family. People often assume that athletes do better in life, generally speaking, because of their intense training and the character values that they have built in the process. Confidence, diligence, discipline, perseverance, and hard work, to name a few. Many would be shocked to learn that this is not true for every athlete. In fact, many of the post-Olympian participants find it quite hard to resume their previous engagements or careers. A recent study shows evidence that athletes may be challenged a whole lot when making the shift back to regular life. Read more about this study from Jena McGregor’s article.