I hope it’s still the same in this day and age across all learning institutions, that being how children are encouraged to take part in as many extracurricular activities as possible so that they’re in with a good chance of perhaps discovering a special talent they may not have even known they had. That’s how it was back in my day and through interactions with some of my peers who went to different schools, I know that that’s pretty much how it was across all schools.
In many instances the children were forced to take part in each activity at least once, which is how they discover that not only do they actually like certain sporting activities for example, but their love grows on the back of their ability to excel in those activities. It works like magic – anybody naturally falls in love with something they’re really, really good at as it gives them a good sense of accomplishment.
Things can get a little testing however when one actually considers the reality of children pursuing competitive school sports in particular and of course I’m talking about just how expensive it can get. For the most part, aspects such as transport to and from the venues where the matches are to be held are organised by the school itself as an institution, but parents undeniably feel it in their pockets when things get really serious.
What if you child makes the district team and rises through the ranks, for example? All of a sudden you have to make sure they have transport to and from better training facilities such as the artificial turf venue in the case of something like hockey, the High Performance Centre, etc. Their equipment gets more expensive as well since they naturally want and need better equipment and make no mistake about it, all of this can get really expensive.
So if you want to save money on school sports equipment, the best way to go about it is getting together with some of the other parents who are raising rising stars and initiate a group-buying drive. It’s a big undertaking, but one which can even go as far as bearing fruit, financially.
When parents visit sports shops with their starry-eyed budding talents they do it individually, independently of each other. This means that they visit sports equipment suppliers who are only really in it for the money and they cannot be blamed for that because they’re running a business at the end of the day.
If parents get together and perhaps start-up a sports equipment shop through chipping in with some small contributions, in the medium term they’ll collectively be able to better afford the equipment since they’ll essentially be sourcing it at wholesale prices, only really marking it up to compensate for the overheads involved with running the operation.
It’ll take a concerted effort and some good self-organisation, but considering just how expensive sporting equipment is becoming each passing year, it’s the only way – is it not?