MLB Hall of Famer Winfield calls specialization ‘recipe for burnout’

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November 14, 2016 / Athletic AdministrationBaseballCoaching

MLB Hall of Famer Dave Winfield has some advice for youth athletes — play multiple sports.

MLB Hall of Famer Dave Winfield, right, calls sport specialization the "recipe for burnout." | Photo: Cbl62, Wikimedia Commons

MLB Hall of Famer Dave Winfield, right, calls sport specialization the “recipe for burnout.” | Photo: Cbl62, Wikimedia Commons

Winfield, who played the majority of his career with the San Diego Padres and New York Yankees, recently sat down with Athlon Sports to discuss his playing career from college to the pros, where he was a 12-time All-Star. When asked what advice he would offer to young athletes, he took the opportunity to speak out against specialization.

“The evolution of sports and the culture of America now, everybody — from the kids, the families, the schools, all these coaches and trainers — everybody wants to funnel a kid into one sport,” Winfield told Athlon Sports. “I can say that it is a recipe for burning a kid out and maybe not exposing a kid to what they’re going to be best at or good at, because they’ve never tried it. And then if you play one sport, you sometimes overwork the muscles just for that one sport.

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