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February 8, 2016 • Coaching

Giancarlo Stanton: ‘I recommend multiple sports’

Miami Marlins star Giancarlo Stanton was a three-sport athlete at his California high school. | Photo: Arturo Pardavila III, Wikimedia Commons
Miami Marlins star Giancarlo Stanton was a three-sport athlete at his California high school. | Photo: Arturo Pardavila III, Wikimedia Commons

We all understand the benefits of playing multiple sports, but it always helps to have an endorsement from a superstar athlete to help make the argument to children and their parents.

Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton, a three-time All-Star and home run champion in 2014, spoke to the L.A. Times last week and talked about the value of playing more than one sport. Stanton played football, basketball and baseball at Sherman Oaks Notre Dame High School (California), making the all-state team in each sport.

Stanton spoke to the Times’ Eric Sondheimer, saying his experience in all three sports is what elevated him to the level he’s playing at today. Here are a couple of his comments:

“I recommend multiple sports for sure,” he said. “The memories I have bouncing around for each sport, having to juggle some in the same day, it’s tough, it’s difficult. You want to stick with one sport and master one thing and be good, yeah, you might be able to go to more combines, but the life experiences and athleticism you get from playing three sports or whatever will stick with you and help you progress.”

“High school is what kind of grows you into the person you are,” he said. “I have great memories, good and bad, some learning experiences and some that I’ll take with me the rest of my life.”

Sondheimer wrote another good piece last fall about three-sport athletes who are having success at a time when specialization is a growing trend. Blame has largely been placed on parents, who are convinced that focusing on a single sport is the best path to scholarships and the professional leagues.

Stanton isn’t the only one to speak on behalf of multi-sport participation. Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon has done it, along with Houston Texans star JJ Watt. Michigan’s athletic association announced last month it would create a task force to educate coaches, parents and athletes about the benefits of playing multiple sports.

Click here to read the complete story from the L.A. Times.


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