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Play Like a Champion Launches #wechampionPLAY to Promote Participation and Play for All

The Play Like a Champion Today Educational Series is excited to announce the launch of the #wechampionPLAY campaign. As teased at this summer's Sports Leadership Conference, the goal of this campaign is to promote an increase in participation in youth and high school sports, while advocating for a greater understanding of what it means to PLAY in our communities.

Sports provide countless benefits to children, who grow physically, mentally, socially and even spiritually through their involvement in team and individual activities. At the heart of a positive youth sports experience is play. At Play Like a Champion, we believe that all children have the right to play in a safe and fun environment!

Yet alarming trends have robbed many children of the ability to participate in youth sports while taking the fun out of practices and games for those who do. Consider the following:

  • According to data from the SFIA and Aspen Institute, participation in youth sports is down nearly 8% over the past decade. 

  • Nearly 70% of children drop-out of sports by the age of 13.

  • The trend toward specialization has meant fewer children are participating in multiple sports, leading to increases in burnout & injury while impacting athlete development. 

  • The cost to participate in youth sports is increasing, creating barrier to entry for middle and low income families. Lower youth sports participation has led to a drop in high school sports participation.

  • Excessive pressure to perform and an emphasis on winning have taken play out of the equation and made the result all that matters.

We need to reverse these trends and change the culture of youth sports! To lead the charge, Play Like a Champion is starting the #wechampionPLAY movement. Through August and September, we're working to bring together our national community of organizations, leagues, schools and teams to share stories, reveal best practices and advocate for increased participation and PLAY in local communities. How can you get involved? Check out the following...

  • Visit the official website at to learn more and see what you can do to promote PLAY in your local community.

  • Enter the #wechampionPLAY contest online. You can win great prizes just by sharing how you champion PLAY and spreading the word. Visit the official website or click the links in our social media posts to enter for a chance to win Play Like a Champion swag and a free registration for the 2019 Sports Leadership Conference!

  • Visit us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to engage with our national community and share your pictures and stories using the hashtag #wechampionPLAY.

  • It's said a picture is worth a thousand words. Show the world how #wechampionPLAY by submitting pictures of your athletes showing what it means to PLAY. We'll post online!

  • Play Like a Champion partners will be receiving the official #wechampionPLAY sign pictured above. Take a picture with the sign to show your support and submit it to have your picture posted online. Then hang the sign somewhere prominent where you can "slap the sign" as a reminder of the importance of PLAY.

Be on the lookout for more ways to participate and ideas for how you can further sports participation and promote PLAY in your community. Together, our national community can make a difference by promoting participation and advocating for the Play Like a Champion approach to PLAY. Join us as we change the culture and assure all children can experience the benefits of youth and high school sports!

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Play Like a Champion Today Educational Series

Tel: 574-250-6424

PO Box 72, Notre Dame, IN 46556