Regina parent shares concerns over increasing cost of youth sports

As the cost of everything in the province continues to rise, one Regina parent is concerned by the increasing price of youth sports.

Single income parent Melissa Grover said her sons are being forced to choose between the sports that they love because it’s too costly to do it all.

“They are both really active and they both really want to be in everything,” Grover told Global News on Sunday. “We have had to set one sport a season because prices have gone up too much and it’s too much to manage two kids in activities.”

Grover said her sons both enjoy hockey, soccer and baseball.

“Last summer we were playing baseball and I paid $60 for both of their league fees and they are playing rec soccer now and I’m paying $100 for that,” she said.

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She said she recognizes that they are different sports but said she notices the price increases this year.

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Baseball Regina told Global News on Friday that fees increased about seven per cent this year.

Dwayne Bidyk, president of Baseball Regina said the increase is due to the cost of equipment, maintaining the diamonds and shipping costs.

“We have seen increases between eight and ten per cent in a lot of the supplies that we are using so we have to pass that along to the participants,” he said.

Baseball Regina has seen a one per cent drop in registration this summer.

“We have had a few (parents) that have stated that, yes, the cost is higher than what they can afford at this point, not that necessarily our costs are high but overall, the cost of living has gone up and they just can’t afford the extracurricular stuff,” Bidyk said.

Grover said she noticed fees aren’t the only area seeing increases, saying personal youth sports equipment is getting pricey as well.

“Myself and other families included are moving towards second hand, going to marketplace, going to sports exchange and even sharing with friends,” she said.

Grover said in her family, sports are too vital for her children to skip out on.

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“The quality of skills that they are learning, teamwork, hard work, all of those are really important so we are trying to budget in other ways so that sports don’t suffer,” she said.

If having her sons in sports means cutting out a streaming service or skipping a weekend activity, then that is something she said is okay with.

However, she said for a lot of families, sports have had to be cut out of their lives entirely because the financial burden is too large.

“A lot of families have already cut out other things and now sports is what needs to go.”

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