So, You Watch Sports. But Do You Let Your Kids Stay Up Late to Watch Sports?

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If you love sports as much as I do, you probably share that passion with your kids. Perhaps you bought a onesie for your newborn adorned in your favorite team’s colors. As the child grows, you might take them to watch sports games when time and budget permits.

When the NBA Finals tipped off this past June, its game times – as they are every year – began well past 9:00 p.m. (ET). That’s a terribly late time for anyone. It’s late for adults who have to go to work the next day. And it’s beyond late for children who need their sleep – even though it’s summertime.

And because it’s summer, I actually let our kids stay awake to enjoy the game with me. But they generally can’t manage much past the first quarter or period. At their young age, it’s not that they’re necessarily analyzing the game and performances like I am. They simply want to be with daddy and stay up late.

However, even if you managed to watch the first half, chances are you didn’t make it until the end when it matters most. 

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The NHL seems to manage better, as face-off is after 8:00 p.m. (ET).

While networks generally dictate start times to appease advertisers, they’re neglecting to invest in the future of fandom who will follow and watch these leagues in the future: our kids.

All this leaves me wondering if our kids will share that passion for sports when they’re older. If they don’t have a habit of enjoying a league championship because it’s too late at night – will they carry their fandom into adulthood? Will they watch sports with their kids?

Hockey and hoops are over. But soon enough the World Series will be upon us, along with a popular slate of NFL’s Sunday and Monday Night Football.

And which sport is the most popular among the Big Four? The NFL, of course. Which plays the majority of its games on Sunday afternoons when anyone can watch.

Hmmm. I see a profitable, lasting correlation here.

I’ll try to keep watching games with our kids and sharing my lifelong interest in sports. But there are only a few leagues out there that make this possible year round. Let’s hope someday that league commissioners, owners, and advertisers can start to put long-term gain ahead of short-term greed that’s slowly chipping away at our kids’ interest in watching sports. 

{ MORE: 6 Tips for a Better Family Bedtime Routine }

So, do you watch sports with your kids?


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So, You Watch Sports. But Do You Let Your Kids Stay Up Late to Watch Sports?

Tom Konecny is a dad of four children and husband to wife, Erika. Tom currently serves as a private consultant in writing, communications and marketing. In 2013, Tom founded Dad Marketing, a site dedicated to exploring the world of marketing to dads. He previously worked in sports marketing, served as an associate editor and writer for several publications, and directed an award-winning corporate marketing department. His first book, "DADLY Dollar$" will be published this summer, and he is c ... More

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