I completely understand parents’ desires to have their children seen and evaluated by scouts. Professional athletes often make millions of dollars each year. Parents hope that success in sports can lead to college scholarships, and maybe pro contracts, for their young athletes. Scouts play a huge role in that process. But should a young athlete play in a showcase event?

In a showcase event, kids participate in exhibition games and skills competitions in front of scouts, talent evaluators, and college coaches. Unfortunately, they can often do more harm than good.

First of all, most of the events are held on the weekends. These kids have usually practiced and played in games all week. They are tired, and their bodies are often fatigued and sore. Research has shown that when young athletes practice and play through pain and fatigue, they increase their risk of suffering injuries, often significantly.

Youth baseball pitcher in a showcase event

Plus, kids understand the importance of impressing the scouts even without pressure from parents and coaches. They might try to throw harder than normal or try riskier slide tackles than normal. Trying to push the body harder when it is already weakened from a week’s or season’s worth of stress could be set up for failure – and injury.

Also read:
Don’t push kids to compete in “showcase” events
12 ways we can all promote youth sports safety