Across Santa Clarita and the wider US, we are in a fantastic age for sporting achievement. Despite the shake-ups that occurred worldwide in 2020, we are witnessing some of the most promising sporting talent emerging countrywide. However, in this day and age, top athletes, football stars, and gymnasts can’t rely on raw talent alone. They need a firm training framework and adaptable facilities that will readily support all they do.
The 2×2 Foundation, founded by sports entrepreneur Nick Palazzo, is just one leading name in the fight for more outstanding physical education. Palazzo started his foundation based on personal faith as well as insight into the need for more widely available training facilities for young people.
But why are training facilities so crucial for the sports stars of tomorrow? How can we help them in the meantime?
Talent is not always innate
Some of the most talented sports stars across the US are innately talented. That much is obvious! However, many people don’t realize that to become a world-leading athlete, gymnast, or soccer star, you need to put in an incredible amount of work.
This is not merely a case of ‘being active.’ Some of our most noted athletes and stars work tirelessly, even during pandemic times, to keep at the top of their game. To be a fantastic sprinter, you need more than just a good pair of sneakers. You need the time and the opportunity to fine-tune your physical prowess.
You also need backing and support from people who believe in you. Unfortunately, there still seem to be marginalized communities struggling to give more impoverished, disenfranchised young people the help and guidance they so deserve.
Growing up in a small town with no access to sports facilities or coaching may present solid walls. Therefore, it’s never been more vital for us to show young people that there is a belief and support system out there waiting for them.
Setting up sports academies and facilities can often be a question of money. Acquiring reliable, world-leading equipment – to support world-leading athletes of the future – is never likely to be a cheap endeavor. However, this is where sports charities and foundations are thinking outside of the box.
The rise of the COVID-19 pandemic presented an interesting pivot or change to how young people sought support. With lockdown measures applying worldwide in the interest of safety, many took to online classes and programs to enroll in long-distance training and guidance. For young people with access to the internet and simple home equipment and space, training has become more convenient in many different ways.
Hopefully, the rise of home-based training will result in more and more marginalized teenagers and young people starting to realize their potential. Only part of the training process is physical, revolving around bodily fitness and health. Much of it is psychological. Young athletes need to believe that they can succeed and have the potential to go far.
Are academies and foundations the answer?
With the global economy taking an unprecedented hit in 2020, it is safe to assume that free money for sports academia may not always be so forthcoming. That is all the more reason why young people should turn to charity support – where possible – to get the guidance and encouragement they deserve.
These opportunities are not always forthcoming. The biggest charities and organizations set up tracks, fitness equipment, and more to improve fitness and form. In many sports – such as in martial arts and cycling – reliable facilities and core support and coaching are essential for success.
Therefore, an ideal scenario maybe for a balance between physical and psychological support. From a young age, athletes and sports stars are under immense pressure. Not only do they face physical stress and strain, but they also face pressures to ‘be the best’ and to excel above all others in their class. This, we can safely assume, will create more issues for young people further down the line.
The future of sports support
Excellent training and fitness facilities, backed by a healthy support network and psychological guidance, will likely help our young athletes in their journeys to becoming well-rounded, healthy, and capable sports stars. In the here and now, there will need to be more of a push to provide marginalized people with the chances to develop their minds as well as their bodies.
Foundations such as 2×2 are doing great work to help bring facilities and guidance closer to those who may not otherwise have access. The future of sport relies on how we are supporting our upcoming stars. Whether they are future marathon runners, NBA stars, or tennis champions – we must invest in them now!