Soccer season has started!

My son plays house league soccer during the summer which is fun for all of us – no pressure, just show up on the field and have a great game of soccer. But my son is competitive by nature and like many other kids, keeps close score on number of goals and wins.

But now, kids’ soccer has changed – there are no standings or wins and losses – since they implemented the new system. There is absolutely nothing we can do but accept these changes and encourage the kids to just go out there and play for fun, not worry about wins, losses and goals.

Yes I ranted about it last year.

I also wrote about why I think it is silly to have a Week of Silence on the soccer field or all kids receiving trophies.

But this post is about another problem I have with kids’ sports. When we first arrived on the soccer field, one of the coaches handed me a folder with a sign-up sheet for SNACKS.

Aw HELLZ NO! I thought we were passed the snacks for kids in sports? My son is now almost 10… TEN. Double digits. Do we really have to haul around soccer snacks for the kids at this age? Aren’t we past this now?!?

I can understand parents with young children who have joined for the first time, getting all excited about their kid playing a team sport… eagerly signing up to bring snacks, being well prepared for their turn and marking it twice on their calendar.

But at this age, I don’t want to have to add yet another item to my never-ending to-do list of things to remember, and then rushing around last minute scrambling to buy enough juice boxes for everyone (because everyone will expect that) along with a “treat” of some sort. Or worry about hauling a giant cooler with freezies onto the field – is there enough ice so they don’t melt?!  Can I bring a – God forbid – healthy snack?!?

Do the kids really need to run and sweat for an hour only to be given a sugary snack right afterward?

I have a ton of food issues and opinions about food but I’m not so extreme that I won’t allow my kids to have treats like popsicles and freezies. But I do try to limit these types of treats. I’d rather them have ice cream and chocolate than sugar-laden drinks and candies with food colouring.

I can only hope some parents will bring orange slices and watermelon wedges but the likelihood is that they will be rewarded with gummi bear snacks and packaged soft cookies. Totally unnecessary.

Not to mention the arguments that will ensue if there aren’t enough snacks for the players’ siblings! Then you have younger kids running around screaming their heads off because they don’t get a freezie too, after sitting in the heat and sun watching their older brother or sister play soccer for an hour.

Each child should be bringing a full water bottle from home anyway so is there a need for juice loaded with sugar? Soccer leagues should set rules for snacks instead or even coaches and parents can come up with an “approved snack” list to hand out to parents.

What do you think? Am I being too harsh here?


Maria Lianos-Carbone is the author of “Oh Baby! A Mom’s Self-Care Survival Guide for the First Year”, and publisher of, a leading lifestyle blog for women.


  1. I have mixed feelings on this. Some kids just love the snack and get so excited at being the one who gets to bring the snack to share with the team. Yes, agreed it is a P.I.T.A for the parents. Our league just sent out an email, stating kids water bottles are sufficient enough ( no juice please) and please provide fresh fruit only on your turn to bring snack.

    • See? Fresh fruit only – that’s the type of letter we need to be sent out!

  2. We aren’t part of a league, but I agree with you. And here’s an idea, everyone bring your own snack.

  3. He’s 10 and they aren’t keeping score? That’s insane. As far as snacks go, there were parents on my kids’ high school teams that brought snacks to tournaments for the girls, but they did it out of their own desire and we were not asked to sign up to bring snacks. By age 10, if your child wants a snack, have him pack it and bring it himself. And I’m with you on the silent saturday thing.

    • Yes! New development program for kids under 12. Meanwhile all of the kids are keeping score anyway – I think we are all competitive by nature!

  4. we’re not nearly at this point yet, but I pretty much think I’d be on the same page as you.
    If I want my kid to have a bunch of sugary garbage, I’ll get it for her. After running around, children should have something moderately nutritious, no?
    At 10, I don’t see the issue with parents being responsible for providing snacks for their OWN children.

    • Yes I think we’re way past the snacks at this age. Can I just show up to watch the game and worry only about my own kid? Thanks!

  5. My daughter is 11 and we do snacks…. BUT the actual snack is pretty clear for everyone. FRUIT… a healthy snack … as directed by the coach. I see nothing wrong with oranges or watermelon but don’t think there is a need for anything else.

    • Glad that your coach encourages fruit. More refreshing than anything else after sweating on the field anyway.

  6. Darlene Schuller Reply

    We’ve done fruits and veggies and water. However, years ago when I played sports we managed to get through an hour game without needing to eat.

    My daughter is in grade 2, my husband and I got her schedule.. she has snack 3 times at school.. plus the lunch we send her. Out of those 3 snack times, we supply 1 for her.. she eats on average every 2 to 2 1/2 hours at school.

    I don’t believe that’s all necessary.. fluids, especially summer sports of course!

  7. Just went through this today. State Champions for Cheer and they have a laundry list of snacks to include apple sauce packets and cheese sticks for comp season. These girls are 15/16 years old,
    RIDICULOUS. How about team “mother’s” focus on their own specific kid. Infantiziling an entire H.S team is cancelling out forward movement into adulthood. I am the mother of the Team Captain. I just put my two cents in politely on our team app and all “gossip” hell broke loose. I don’t want to. I am busy. Plus…honestly ROW YOUR OWN BOAT. It’s thousands a year as it is.
    Pray for me. 🙂

    -Jessica ( I hate juice boxes) Kelly

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