Direct Impact of Athletic Endeavors

Game On! The Impact of Youth Sports on a Regional Economy, Pgs. 7-32

In this 2012 report, authors Sherwood B. Smith and Ann Tisdale describe youth athletic tournaments as significant catalysts for economic growth. They explain, “The emphasis on travel for competition has translated into significant economic impact on a national scale.” Since these tournaments involve youth athletes, each young person normally travels with at least one parent. According to the National Association of Sports Commissions, parents will cumulatively spend about $7 billion this year alone on travel for youth sports. By taking into consideration the varied expenditures, such as lodging, meals, and local tourism, it is evident that the full economic benefits of youth sports can be abundant.

Smith, Sherwood B. and Ann Tisdale. “Game On! The Impact of Youth Sports on a Regional Economy.” Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce and Traverse Bay Area Youth Soccer. 18 September 2012. Pgs. 7-32. Web. 6 November 2015. <>.


Youth sports means big dollars for local tourism

When it comes to tourism, youth and amateur sporting events have a large impact on local economies. According to this article published in Tampa Bay Times, youth sporting events produce more revenue than the local college teams. Youth sports tournaments, particularly in soccer and baseball, will attract families of athletes that fill the city’s hotels and restaurants. In Florida, youth sports have served as a “tourist draw” that countered the economic downturn. The enticing prospect of hosting youth sporting events causes stiff competition, as counties bid against out of state locations. As their potential of contributing to local economies is realized, youth sports will become of larger importance.

Huettel, Steve. “Youth sports means big dollars for local tourism.” Tampa Bay Times. 17 September 2010. Web. 6 November 2015. <>.


The Economy of Youth Sports

As youth sports in the United States become increasingly organized into leagues and tournaments, their economic impact becomes significant. This info graphic presented by the University of Florida quantifies the financial impact of sports teams in relation to the number of young people who participate in them, taking into consideration various factors such as sports-related costs, travel expenses, and sporting event tourism. While participation in youth sports is a costly investment for families, this added revenue strongly benefits the national economy. For instance, local businesses receive an average of $985 from each family that is accompanying an athlete to a sporting event. From these visiting family members, 60% later return to the city for an overnight vacation or visit, adding to the local tourism.

“The Economy of Youth Sports.” UF Online. University of Florida, 2015. Web. 6 November 2015. <>.

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