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Out of Town Team/Traveling

Jul 16, 2018
118
18
Can anyone relay their experience with playing with out of town teams?

Specifically 2.5 hours or further away, how did you make it work for you and your family? What was your childs thoughts and how did they take it? Were you a rostered player or just a guest? If just a guest how did fees work?
 
May 18, 2009
1,313
38
I couldn’t afford the cost/time associated with DD playing that far away. If I had more money it would have been the right decision as the level of play is higher.
 

Strike2

Allergic to BS
Nov 14, 2014
804
43
For some, traveling may be the only way to play because of tournament availability. For others who live in or near a larger city, where you are may be where others are traveling to play. I don't understand teams that regularly travel to play in the same level of tournament that they could find staying at home.

If a team is really that good, and can beat most everyone in its neighborhood, regular travel to higher level tournaments may well be the way to go. Even for the more average but still capable team, an occasional out of town trip can be a great experience, especially if it's to a place you might go if softball wasn't involved.

However, done too often or without good reason, it can also be an expensive and frustrating waste of time. Travel, hotel, and meal bills add up quickly. You're working in unfamiliar places against teams that you have no clue about, and dealing with tournament directors and umpires you don't know and who may even favor the local team. If you're really that good, that unfamiliarity might not matter as much, but it will really suck to repeatedly travel hundreds of miles to get blown out early.

As far as guest fees go, I always offer to pay, and if refused, I buy something for the team and don't take no for an answer.
 

Strike2

Allergic to BS
Nov 14, 2014
804
43
Im looking in terms of taking your child to another city to play with a team
I'm sure experiences vary. With most any situation like that, the kid is dealing with a coach she doesn't regularly practice with, and a dugout full of players who she doesn't know. If she's really good, she'll probably find a warm welcome, but many of the other things I mentioned above still apply to an individual. There's something to be said for playing in a familiar place. For most kids, that long drive will get old after a short while. I wouldn't regularly do it if there were any viable alternative closer to home, and I wouldn't even consider it unless we're talking about a very good player personally committed to playing at least at the HS level.
 
Jul 16, 2018
118
18
I'm sure experiences vary. With most any situation like that, the kid is dealing with a coach she doesn't regularly practice with, and a dugout full of players who she doesn't know. If she's really good, she'll probably find a warm welcome, but many of the other things I mentioned above still apply to an individual. There's something to be said for playing in a familiar place. For most kids, that long drive will get old after a short while. I wouldn't regularly do it if there were any viable alternative closer to home, and I wouldn't even consider it unless we're talking about a very good player personally committed to playing at least at the HS level.
Thank you and my apologies as I left out some things but I did on purpose and wasn’t sure if needed known.

Traveling expenses are only gas/food and time. If overnights are involved family/friends are available.

Reason for the post is to hear the individual experiences. Looking for perspectives of those that did it and liked/hated it


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Apr 20, 2015
337
28
Thank you and my apologies as I left out some things but I did on purpose and wasn’t sure if needed known.

Traveling expenses are only gas/food and time. If overnights are involved family/friends are available.

Reason for the post is to hear the individual experiences. Looking for perspectives of those that did it and liked/hated it


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
We drive 3 hrs one way to my daughter's travel team. Organization is top notch. Coaching is beyond excellent. Parent drama is near zero. We can afford it and we are invested as a family and aren't not doing other things in order to do this. Wouldn't change a thing.

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Mar 6, 2018
83
18
We traveled almost an hour to practice facility (just once a week even though we prefer 2x). Tournaments are usually 2.5 -3 hours away 2x a month sometimes more since we got rained out early in season. Luckily our monthly fees are minimal due to fundraising. However we are moving to a slightly closer team but with slightly higher fees. Looking at around $450/year for team dues. We are playing full time but may guest play with former team as we have good relationship. Play March til early November and practice in offseason indoors. My daughter was skeptical and shy last year trying out for just the one team she made. We tried out many more teams this year and she loved almost all of them and enjoyed the process. Last year she would not have been able to try out to so many teams. I'd say trying out with some other girls there from the team helps.. She did a few private workouts and they were a little harder for her to open up and play loose. Connecting with the girls helps. Seeing the coaches in action with the team makes a difference too. Find a good coach and team and practice as close as possible. Longer drives for tourneys arent as bad. It's like a mini vacay. The girls bond on overnights
 
Oct 2, 2011
3,485
113
Florida
I have debated answering this because my DD is in a really good situation with a team not based locally but she is also at the 16U-A level and we purposely avoided extensive travel until the second half of her second year in 14U-A.

If you can avoid it until your DD is in HS, then you should do so.
Sometimes you can't avoid it - I understand that as well.

It is good to have teammates as you develop and travel will grind you down and take the fun out of it eventually. And I say that because I have seen so any kids quit after spending 10U, 12U and 14U traveling way too much in either teams on individually. And if your DD is lucky enough to still be playing in 16U then recruiting level travel is even more brutal because you are adding camps, campus visits, showcases and other recruiting activities on top of the team travel.

If you HAVE to do it you want to go to a team at least 2.5 hours drive away. Then there is ZERO expectation you will make any practice.

You can get a LOT down in a short period of time. We have field access so that is good - you need a field to workout out on. We are lucky to have 4 girls locally on my DD's team this year so they work out together, go to the field together and with the four of them they can do live hitting, fielding, etc. You can get a weeks worth of practice and reps in 75 minutes - and we do that twice a week. That is a lot of swings - way more than you could ever get with a 12-memeber team practice.

Even when it was just my DD, we would go out and get our work in a compressed time. But then she also practiced with a local team that were nice enough to include her once every other week or her HS team had some sort of captains practice on so she got to throw and play with others. For me it is great - I still get to go out on the field with my DD and run some drills or throw front toss - but I don't have to be head coach for the team either.

Drama has been WAY down - I would like to think that is because we only really have to deal with everyone at tournaments but it could be that we just have a good set of families and most of our players are heading in a similar direction for what they want out of softball. Maybe it is both. My DD really looks forward to seeing her teammates every tournament.
 
Last edited:
Apr 20, 2017
90
18
The age you are talking about and the position of the player would factor in the decision also. We actually looked into this ourselves as we were figuring out our plans for this fall. We are going into 12u and our DD is a pitcher. Our big concerns were missing regular team practice. We had a local team offer her a chance to come practice with them. And would have worked on our own also. We had decided that we would try to make it work but before going to our first workout with a team that far away we were offered a spot on an equal or better team around an hour from the house. Being able to go to team practice and the team coaches having more interest in developing her as an all around player was a big bonus. Older girls that have been around the block and are past the development stage I think can make it work and many teams are made up this way. But for younger girls you must have a strong support system locally to keep them on the right track. I have heard of some girls actually playing for two teams also in this situation. The big name team far off and a local team. The big time team comes first for tournaments but the local team is good for practice and playing when team A is off.

As I said we thought about it long and hard. And I would just advise you to be truthful with yourself if you can make it work and be beneficial to you daughter.
 

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