You can specialize to potentially give your kid a leg up and politically maneuver your kid onto every spring team, and top team out there. But remember, if your kid is 10 and he's not the best at every sport he plays - there's no future in hockey. By 14-16 the athletes will prevail especially when they decide to focus on one sport. So for a litmus test, instead of chasing every spring / summer tourney out there - put your kid on a baseball field or on a lacrosse field or on a golf course. If he's not one of top kids in everything he does, stop chasing the dream and just enjoy the ride.
We all went to school with kids who made it to d1 and beyond in a sport. In my experience, without exception, the kids growing up who played at that level were outstanding in every sport they played. And most could have switched along the way and played in college at another sport they played. The importance of pure atheticism cannot be understated. I don't care what anyone says, you cannot spend enough or skate your 9 year old enough to manufacture a high level player if he doesn't have dominant physical ability. And I'm no geneticist but I bet a tremendous amount of that ability comes from mom and dad. So looking in the mirror, I'd say my kids need to study hard and make good friends.
100% spot on. The d1 kids are dominant in every sport as kids and often times could have played another d1 sport in college but had to make a choice at some point. You can start a kid early, skate year round and manufacture a hockey player at 9-12 years old. The true elite athletes will be the d1 kids down the road once they finish growing and specialize. And there are very very few of them.
Athleticism, stature, iq, compete level, passion...100% accurate...pass the popcorn...