The following is a post from writer Dianna Kennedy. This post contains affiliate links – thank you for your support!
As a mother to many small children, making sure they stay active is vital for everyone in our family. My kids love sports, but the fees and equipment can be expensive!
I’ll share my best tips for trying to keep the costs under control.
When I was contemplating gymnastics for my children, I compared prices from three different gyms. One offered discounts for multiple children, while one had deeply discounted rates for homeschoolers.
By checking more than one source or league, you could cut your cost in half.
2. Ask for Discounts
My boys are in Tae Kwon do at a local children’s sports center. They give significant discounts for multiple children, so it works beautifully for a big family.
Ask for rate reductions for multiple children, or for homeschool classes.
My friend Colleen was able to score gymnastics for her children for free, simply by referring more homeschool children to her gym.
3. Make it a Gift
If your family members are stumped for gift ideas for birthdays or Christmas, what about sports fees or equipment?
My mother in law likes to give my children a small gift, along with a check that’s used for Tae Kwon Do or gymnastics.
4. Contact your Church
I’ve been involved as a parent with the Upward sports leagues and loved it. These are non competitive, instructional sports leagues that are sponsored by churches. Check the website to find flag football, soccer, basketball and cheer leading in your area.
If you’re a member of a Catholic parish with a school, your children are probably eligible to participate in sports there, too.
If you volunteer to head up a team, you may be able to ask that your children’s entrance fees be waived. It would be a great way to help out your sports league, stay involved with your children, and lessen the hit on your wallet
6. Set Limits
My daughter is a social butterfly, and loves to try new things. If I gave her the green light, she’d want to swim, do riding lessons, gymnastics and art classes.
You have to draw the line somewhere.
We limit out children to one activity at a time.
7. Pick a Cheaper Sport
If you’re looking for ways to trim your extra curricular budget, aim for sports that have a low starting cost, or don’t need a lot of equipment.
8. Search for Second Hand Equipment
If possible, check out used equipment. Ask around to your friends, scour seasonal consignment sales (link), or browse Ebay and Craigslist. You may score barely used lacrosse gear or ice skates for pennies on the dollar.
What about you? How do you save money on sports? Be sure and share your tips in the comments.
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