Sizing Up Scoring

The National Standards for Youth Sports, which is the voice of recreation professionals nationwide on what is best for children in sports, states that scores and standings should not be emphasized for ages 8 and under; and that for ages 9 and 10, the score can be kept but standings should be de-emphasized.

What do you do in your programs? Are the scoreboards turned on for all your games? Do you have policies in place outlining at what age scores are kept? What about your parents–how do you handle those who insist that scores should be kept?

Clearly, when it comes to youth games and scores, there are many questions–and some challenging answers.

Drop me an e-mail on how you handle the issue of scorekeeping in your program–I’d love to hear what works for you and your young athletes.

Fred Engh is founder and CEO of the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) in West Palm Beach, Fla., which has been advocating positive and safe sports for children since 1981. He is also the author of Why Johnny Hates Sports, which is available on He can be reached via e-mail at

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  1. The Mercy Rule
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  3. Why Johnny Hates Sports
  4. Teaching The Basics
  5. Online Training

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