The real cost of sporting success


New research shows that bringing up a sporting champion can cost parents an average of £4,000 in their teenage years alone in term of club subscriptions, new kit, ferrying them to and from competitions and equipment.

But the cost can rocket depending on what sport the child excels at – horse riding for example will set parents back £7,637, while go-karting enthusiasts eager to follow in the footsteps of Lewis Hamilton will cost parents £811 a year which totals nearly £6,000 between the ages of 11-18.

The study by Chef & Brewer polled 2,000 parents of children that took part in organised sport at least three times a week.

Six in ten parents said they would hate to stand in the way of their child and their chance to excel at sport regardless of how much it cost.

But a more cautious 27 per cent said it was impossible for their offspring to attend every club meeting and competition due to money and logistics.

Taking their children to clubs, competitions and training will set the typical parent back £50 a week with one in ten parents regularly driving more than 75 miles to regional and county matches.

A quarter of parents said they would never refuse to take their children to an activity that they wanted to attend.

Despite football being the most popular sport for British youngsters to play it was also the cheapest.

Competitive swimming was the second most common sport for 11-18 year olds to take part in.

After petrol to and from competitions, new kit, membership fees and extra tuition the parent of a swimmer can expect to pay £586 a year or £4,106 from the ages of 11-18.

Ballet and dancing enthusiasts will pay nearly £5,000.

Researchers also found that the typical sporting child takes part in nearly seven hours of sport a week and parents will spend £197 on membership fees alone for their children.

Not surprisingly, 41 per cent of the 2,000 parents polled said they sometimes feel like their whole life is dedicated to their kid’s hobbies.

Despite that – three quarters of parents said they would rather their child played sport than being cooped up indoors watching TV.

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