The Impact of Travel Athletics

Ellie Coursen (front center) captures a tournament win with her travel softball team.

Hailey Coursen

As time has progressed, travel athletic programs have increased in popularity. Travel clubs not only provide athletes with increased opportunities but also allow athletes to create endless memories and form unbreakable friendships.

Ellie Coursen, a member of Central PA Sharks Travel Softball Program and  Central Penn Volleyball Club has been associated with at least one travel athletic program since she was in sixth grade. Coursen feels as though travel athletics have not only elevated her game but also have given her lifelong friendships and memories.

“I’ve met some of my closest friends with travel sports,” Coursen stated. “You make so many new connections and friendships that will last your whole life.”

Coursen also enjoys the exposure and competitiveness of travel athletics.

“You get a chance to play a little more competitively than school… you can see different coaching styles so it really helps in improving your game.”

College coaches and recruiters are also more inclined to attend travel events rather than school-affiliated events, for the more competitive atmosphere of travel athletic events makes for a better selection of athletes. Almost all of the top collegiate athletics today participated in at least some form of travel athletic program, which helped them to gain exposure to college programs.

Travel athletics does not only impact one’s skill level in their sport of choice. Travel clubs and teams allow athletes to create unbreakable bonds and learn unforgettable lessons.

In the words of Coursen herself, “I think that they [travel sports] are a good way to learn life lessons, see new places, meet new people, create friendships, and of course, play the sport I love at an accelerated level. I think everyone should play travel athletics.”

Ellie Coursen captures a tournament win with her travel softball team.