Football and Thanksgiving: A Perfect Match November 3, 2017

For many people, their thanksgiving is not complete without turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and… football! Football has become an integral part of Thanksgiving day, but where did this tradition come from? Read on to learn more about how Thanksgiving and football became the perfect match.

How Thanksgiving Football Started

Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving a national holiday in 1863 and the first football games on Thanksgiving took place in 1869, so football has been integral to this holiday almost right from the start. This first Thanksgiving game was played in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at the Germantown Club, and subsequent games were played between Princeton and Yale. The Intercollegiate Football Association officially made football a Thanksgiving fixture in 1882 when they decided to hold an annual collegiate championship game in New York City on Thanksgiving day. The two leading teams in the association would play, and now Thanksgiving weekend marks the end of the regular season for college football. Professional football teams have played on Thanksgiving since their start in the 1890s, and the New York Pro Football League and the Ohio League combined into the NFL in 1920 and the NFL has played on Thanksgiving ever since. The Detroit Lions have played home Thanksgiving games since 1934 as have the Dallas Cowboys since 1966. The Lions’ then-owner, George A. Richards set up the holiday game as a way to draw attention to his new franchise, and Richards used his radio station to broadcast to 94 stations nationwide. Although the Lions lost the match to the Chicago Bears, the tradition stuck and inspired the manager of the larger Dallas Cowboys to start playing a Thanksgiving game as well. Many people today think of pumpkin pie, turkey, and the Lions and the Cowboys as Thanksgiving fixtures. The NFL added a third game to this lineup in 2006, and a rotating host team would play on Thanksgiving night.

Turkey Bowl

Along with professional and college football games on Thanksgiving day, high schools often have games as well that are called a Turkey Bowl or Turkey Day Game. This is in honor of the main dish that graces most American’s Thanksgiving tables, and often these games are against a fierce rival or a culmination of league play that will result in a champion for the year. Turkey Bowl is now also used by informal groups who organize Thanksgiving day games and could include flag football, street football, or touch football. Although these Turkey Bowl games are informal, they often involve rivalries that can last for decades between families, coworkers, fraternities, and churches across the country. Even if you don’t participate in an organized game, if the weather is nice Thanksgiving is a great time to toss around the pigskin (and maybe burn off some of those calories)!

Throwback Uniforms

A fun tradition of Thanksgiving day games in recent years has been the introduction of wearing throwback uniforms. The NFL debuted their Throwbacks Collection in 1991, and in 1994 honoring the NFL’s 75th anniversary teams were allowed to wear old uniform styles. Not every part of the old uniforms were copied, especially ones that might pose a safety risk such as the obsolete leather helmets that were discontinued in the 1950s. Instead, decals and striping were removed from the current helmets to fit better with the older style of jerseys. The throwback jerseys also still displayed the player’s last name on the back, which has been part of the NFL official rules since 1970. The fonts used on the throwback jerseys were as close as possible to the originals, and some teams wore jerseys that existed before the large player number was displayed on the front, so they included a smaller number on the shoulder. Some of these jerseys were so popular that they became the full-time team uniforms. In 2013 the NFL imposed new rules that prohibited the use of alternate colored helmets, which has hampered having a truly throwback uniform for many teams. Teams can still use alternate decals, or no decals, but they must also use them on the regular helmets. Thanksgiving day games have become a time when teams, notably the Lions and Cowboys, showcase their throwback jerseys.

Thanksgiving Football Games 2017

Continuing the football tradition, this year there will be three NFL games played on Thanksgiving. The Detroit Lions will face off against the Minnesota Vikings at 12:30pm ET; this will be their second face off in the 2017 season. Then the Dallas Cowboys will take on the Los Angeles Chargers at 4:30pm ET—this is the first time the Chargers will have played on Thanksgiving since 1970. The third game makes NFL history, as the Washington Redskins host a game for the first time in their franchise history. They will play the New York Giants, and while the Redskins have played many a Thanksgiving match, they have not hosted. In addition to these professional games will be various college level and high school games, and countless neighborhoods will head outside to throw the football around.

So get ready for some turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberries, and a healthy dose of football. If you are one of the millions of Americans who equate Thanksgiving and football you won’t be disappointed this year! There is something special about gathering together, eating great food, and watching exciting games. Moneyball Sportswear wishes you a happy Thanksgiving, and if you are looking to make your own custom team throwback uniforms, request a free quote from us today!

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Preventing Sports Dehydration July 31, 2017

Summer is still going, and summer sports are still in full swing. Fall sports (and school!) are on the horizon, and the weather in both of these seasons can be sunny, hot, and dehydrating. Playing sports in the warmer seasons (and really all year long) requires the proper hydration to keep you or your kids feeling good and playing great. Read on for why hydration is so important, and what steps you can take to ensure that you are getting enough water.

Why is Hydration so Important?

Our bodies do not store water, and need a constant supply of it to stay healthy and maintain bodily functions. Even though water does not contain any calories, it is considered a vital nutrient that makes up more than 50 percent of our bodies. Water aids in blood circulation, carries oxygen to cells, regulates body temperature and is a cooling agent for the body. More than this, water helps 

your body remove wastes and toxins, helps the body absorb nutrients, moisturizes the skin, and protects and cushions organs. Water is essential to human health, and the more energy you expend the more water you need. Athletes are particularly vulnerable to becoming dehydrated, and need to pay special attention to the signs of dehydration.

How to Spot Dehydration

Everyone has experienced being particularly thirsty after vigorous physical activity, but there are more serious complications to being dehydrated. Heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heatstroke are all more serious consequences of dehydration. When you become dehydrated, your body temperature rises, and the heart rate increases. Your mouth may dry out, your eyes may look sunken, and you can be irritable and have a drastic lack of energy. Your performance can decrease as well, and your strength, energy, coordination, and reflexes can become impaired. The other telltale sign of dehydration is dark-colored urine, and if you are not urinating frequently, or if your urine is not light-colored, you may be dehydrated. Being able to spot dehydration is especially important for parents and coaches of young athletes, who can dehydrate more quickly than adults due to the way their body water is distributed. Being on the lookout for early signs of dehydration can prevent more serious complications.

Heat Illness

If you do experience dehydration, heat illness will occur in three stages. Heat cramps are the first stage, and this is where you would feel excessively thirsty, and have cramps in the stomach, arms, or legs. Sports games in hot weather can easily produce heat cramps, and they should be treated before they become more serious, and you move into the next stage of heat exhaustion. Heat exhaustion includes headache, dizziness, nausea, and muscle cramps. This is your body’s way of telling you that something is wrong, and parents and coaches should watch for these warning signs in children. The last stage of heat illness is heat stroke, and your body temperature can spike to dangerously high levels (104 degrees or higher), you may vomit, and have rapid, shallow breathing. The stages of heat illness can rapidly progress, and you need to spot the signs early so that more serious complications don’t occur.

Prevent Dehydration

Obviously, you need to drink water to prevent becoming dehydrated. Especially in young athletes, this can be hard to regulate, and you might not know how much water is really enough. Take into consideration the temperature, humidity, the length of a game or practice, and any heavy gear that your athlete may be wearing that increases the amount that they sweat. A general rule is to drink 4 to 8 ounces of water for every fifteen to twenty minutes of exercise. But it is also important to enter into any sporting activities properly hydrated to have the best possible start. Having your children drink water throughout the day is important, and it is easier to get hydrated first and then maintain that hydration than to go into a sports activity already lacking water. Water can also come from foods, and juicy fruits are especially great at adding in needed water to the system (think watermelon or oranges). During sporting events, sports drinks can be really good for providing both carbohydrates and electrolytes that are lost when you sweat. Water doesn’t supply these essential nutrients, and getting kids to drink sports drinks may be easier than plain water. Always having a water bottle nearby can help young and old athletes to remember to drink enough water, and making sure that bottle is empty at the end of a game can help parents regulate how much their kids are drinking.

So get out there this summer and fall and perform your best with the proper hydration! Fueling your body is essential for peak performance on the field, and getting a custom team uniform is essential to looking your best while playing! Moneyball Sportswear is proud to offer high quality custom uniforms for every sport! You keep an eye on your hydration levels, and let us take care of your new sports uniform!

 

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The Benefits of Playing Sports June 23, 2017

If you or your child are thinking of playing sports, you might not even realize the benefits that you can reap. Sports are great for the body, mind, and can be a decision that positively affects your whole life. Read on for some great benefits of playing sports.

Academics

You may be joining sports partially because you think you’re more the sporty type than the academic type, but sports actually help many athletes do better in school. Sports emphasize skills such as repetition and memorization that can translate into the academic realm. Sports can be a great organizational tool that can help you prioritize school work to be done before practice. Sports can also help students struggling academically to get a boost of confidence that can carry over into their studies.

Teamwork

Team sports foster communication and working together. Having a common goal with your teammates, coaches, and parents can help build excitement to achieve and win. You may be a great athlete, but if you can’t be a team player you will not be a standout sports star. Learn to play well with your teammates and you will gain a skill that can be translated into other areas of your life. Daily life requires problem solving, communication, and being a community member.

Stress Relief

For many people playing sports is a great way to relieve stress and tension and really unwind. Being able to physically release pent up stress can help take your mind off of daily problems, and even give you a chance to reflect on solutions. If you feel stressed after work or school, playing sports is a good way to unwind and focus your mental energy on your performance and sports goals.

Friendship

Being involved in sports can create lifelong friendships that can extend well beyond the life of the team. When you are focused on common sports goals, you are cemented together with your teammates in a pursuit that really bonds you. If you have trouble meeting friends in other situations, sports can be a great way to meet people who are from different backgrounds, schools, and communities.

Health

Sports can also be great for your physical health. You can lose weight, build muscle, and keep your body moving through playing sports. Especially with many jobs being sedentary, and kids staying indoors to play video games, joining a sports team that gets you out of the house and moving is so important.

Self Esteem

If you are lacking in confidence, excelling at a sport you love can boost your self-esteem. If you can conquer your sports goals, you will have more confidence to tackle other hurdles in life. Getting better at your sport and winning games is great for your self esteem, and that can impact your whole life!

So what are you waiting for? Find a sport you love, and join a team! And when you’re ready to get awesome custom team uniforms, Moneyball Sportswear is here for you! We offer high-quality uniforms for basketball, soccer, baseball, hockey, softball, volleyball, and virtually any other sport you can think of! A custom team uniform really solidifies and legitimizes your team and gives you a great, cohesive look. Contact us today for a quote!

 

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Sports On The Rise May 30, 2017

While sports are still incredibly popular in the United States, we are also fighting an ongoing obesity epidemic, and physical activity has been replaced with time on phones, games, and in front of the TV. Traditional sports such as basketball, football, and baseball are still mainstays in our culture, and even soccer is on the rise in popularity. If you are looking to get involved in a new sport, or get your children interested at an early age, there are many new sports to choose from. In the U.S., there has been growing interest in lacrosse, rugby, field hockey and roller hockey, and these sports might be just the thing to get you involved in a great physical activity. Read on to see what each of these sports is all about!

Lacrosse

Lacrosse is one of the fastest growing sports in the U.S., and this spring and summer sport appeals to men, women, and kids. Participation in lacrosse grew 47 percent from 2010 to 2015 and doesn’t seem to be slowing down. Kids who don’t feel drawn to any of the traditional sports should consider lacrosse; this game looks a lot like soccer while utilizing some of the quick moves of sports like basketball. In lacrosse, players run across a field carrying sticks with baskets on the ends, passing a small, rubber ball, and trying to land the ball in one of the goals at either end of the field. Each lacrosse team has 10 players, and they wear protective gear to protect themselves from the high speed ball being passed around the field. Like soccer and basketball, lacrosse is a team sport that requires communication and working together, and players must develop extreme accuracy in their shots. Lacrosse involves a lot of running, so players are constantly developing their speed and stamina, and getting great physical exercise. Lacrosse is truly an American sport, invented by Northeastern Native American tribes as early as the 1400s, and could be played with up to 1,000 players at once! If you have been looking for a new sport to try, lacrosse is a great option!

Rugby

Another sport on the rise is rugby, seeing a 43 percent rise since 2010, seeing the biggest growth of any sport in individuals 18-24 years old. Major sports channels now carry rugby games, especially after rugby was included in the 2016 Olympics Summer Games. Rugby is similar to American football, and is a fast-paced game that utilizes a similar looking ball to score goals. While rugby may look unfamiliar, and uses terms such as  “pitch”, “scrum”, “ruck” and “maul”, this game is a lot of fun! Unlike American football, there are very few stops in the action during a rugby game, and players on the field play both offense and defense. Like soccer, rugby can be played with just a ball, and this sport is gaining participants quickly. If you already love football, you probably will also love playing rugby!

Field Hockey 

If you live on the east coast of the U.S. you have probably been exposed to field hockey, but for some people this sport is somewhat of a mystery. Field hockey has its roots thousands of years back in ancient Greece, and first appeared in public schools in the UK in the 19th century. This game can be played on grass or turf, like soccer, and players use sticks to hit a hard, round ball into goals at opposite ends of the field. Unlike soccer, in field hockey you only want to hit the ball with the stick, not with any part of your body. Although more men than women play field hockey worldwide, in the U.S. it is primarily regarded as a women’s sport. This has been changing in recent years, as more boys become interested in this fast, fun sport, and joining teams. If you love ice hockey, you should try out field hockey!

Quidditch

Yes, you read that right—Quidditch! This is, of course, the game that originated in J.K. Rowling’s world of Harry Potter, and has been gaining popularity. Yes, there are broomsticks (although no one is flying on them), and Quidditch combines tag, rugby and dodgeball to emerge as a truly unique sport. There are more than 170 official college teams, and there were thousands of spectators at a U.S. Quidditch-sponsored event in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina recently. Who knows if Quidditch can stand the test of time and endure as an American sport, but if combining magic, wizardry, and sports seems appealing, Quidditch might be for you! Quidditch is also a great way to get your bookworm kids to take interest in a sport that has come alive straight out of the pages!

 

So if you have felt like basketball, baseball and football just aren’t for you, or your kids, don’t despair! There are so many choices of sports these days, and they are rising in popularity. At Moneyball Sportswear we want to provide custom uniforms for any sport you want to play—and yes, we offer Quidditch uniforms! We are committed to providing the highest quality for any of your team uniforms, whether they have basic designs, or more complex and intricate designs. Whatever new sport you choose to play, whether it is lacrosse, rugby, or even Quidditch, make your experience that much better with a custom team uniform from Moneyball Sportswear. With so many options, there is no reason to neglect joining a team—go out and find your perfect sport!

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Start a Company Sports Team! May 4, 2017

If you are a company looking to increase employee performance, boost morale and encourage health and wellness, forming a company sports team may be a great solution. With so many great team sports to choose from, you may have a hard time deciding whether to form a basketball, baseball, soccer, volleyball, football or hockey team. Whatever sport you choose to go with, make the experience even better by ordering custom team uniforms from Moneyball Sportswear. We can provide you with team gear that will make your team stand out, and can include your company name! Let our custom team uniforms help your company team today, and get started with a new company sports team.dreamstime_xxl_30841446

Health

If you are looking to promote healthy employees in your workplace, offering a team sport is an excellent option. Sports get people moving, and are part of a healthy lifestyle. Consider having team practices, and provide information for employees to train and condition on their own. Sometimes all someone needs is some healthy competition to incorporate more exercise into their life! A company team gives employees wanting to get back into the sports they love a chance to do it with their coworkers.

Improved Work Performance

The bonds and communication skills formed during company team sports can translate to the workplace as well. If employees are comfortable with their coworkers, and have tackled working together on the sports field, they will work together better in their workplace as well. Getting to know your coworker’s strengths and weaknesses on the field can help with job performance. Any activities that bring employees together in fun, positive ways reap only good things in the workplace.

Morale

Boosting employee morale is easily accomplished through company team sports. When you form a sports team, everyone is working together toward a goal that is achievable in one game-winning. In the workplace, employees are often disconnected and chasing after very different goals. Company team sports gives employees a common goal to focus on and can boost company morale. A company team also shows employees that their employer cares about them outside of the workplace and can make them feel more valued. Nothing will boost morale more than a great win against a fierce competitor!

Community

A company sports team is a great chance to get your company’s name out into the community. Getting custom team uniforms made through Moneyball Sportswear is the perfect chance to let everyone know what company your sports team is representing. This builds brand awareness, and gives employees a chance to connect with other players, teams, companies and community members. Let your community know that you are a company that cares about your employees and encourages positive, healthy team building!

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Forming a company sports team can be great for many aspects of your business, from employee’s morale to brand awareness. If you have been wanting to find a great team building experience for your employees, a company sports team is a great idea! Order your custom team uniforms from Moneyball Sportswear today, and get started on a great season!

 

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The History of Basketball April 5, 2017

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Many of us can’t imagine our lives without the game of basketball being front and center. From playing to watching, basketball captures the attention of fans all over the world. The game as we know it has only been around for a little over a hundred years; read on to see how this great sport developed.

 

MoneyBallBody1While the game of basketball as we know it started in 1891, games involving balls and hoops date further back. The Mayan culture had a game that combined elements of basketball and soccer, where players attempted to get a ball through a round stone circle using any part of their body besides their hands. Of course, in this game the winner got to be sacrificed to the gods, basketball champions today just get to celebrate! The creation of basketball is credited to Canadian Dr. James Naismith who was a physical education instructor at the YMCA in Springfield Massachusetts. In 1891 he was looking for a sport to condition athletes during the cold winter months, and looking for a game that wouldn’t lead to as many injuries as football.

 

The first game of basketball utilized a soccer ball and peach baskets for hoops. The baskets were attached to the wall, and if anyone did score, the play would have to stop while the janitor brought out a ladder and retrieved the ball. The bottoms of the peach baskets were eventually removed. The first person recorded as scoring in a basketball game was William R. Chase, and that first game ended with a final score of 1-0 (how things have changed!).

 

Naismith fashioned those first teams with 9 players each, which was usual for baseball teams of the day. There were thirteen rules he established for this newly formed game, many of which he formed to avoid roughhousing and injury. One of these rules was that there was no running while holding the ball; this avoided the tackling and grabbing found in other sports. Of his 13 original rules there are 9 that are still used in some form in modern basketball.

 

Naismith’s involvement with the YMCA was instrumental in spreading this new game of basketball around the world. The troops fighting in World War I also took basketball where they were stationed, and interest in the game grew quickly. In 1894 Spalding made the first basketball that was specifically designed for the game; this original ball had laces, and would go through several modifications before becoming what is played with today.

 

MoneyBallBody2The first professional basketball leagues were formed in 1898 and featured six teams that competed for the championship. While these leagues grew and changed over the years, it was really American colleges that paved the way for the popularity of the sport. In 1897 the National Collegiate Athletic Association was formed, and the NCAA is still extremely popular today.

 

Basketball was also becoming popular in Europe, and in 1909 the first international basketball match was held between Saint Petersburg and an American YMCA team. In 1932 the International Basketball Federation was formed and they were instrumental in getting basketball into the Olympics in 1936; the US national team won the first Olympic title in the sport.

 

The National Basketball Association (NBA) was formed in 1945, and for about a decade had a rival in the American Basketball Association (ABA). The ABA had a different style of game that was more high energy and emphasized jumping and playing above the rim. The ABA also utilized the threepoint shot, and when the ABA folded into the more successful NBA in 1976, the NBA adopted this shot and some of the style of the ABA. The NBA is the most popular professional basketball league in the world, and has helped to popularize basketball throughout the world.

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So from humble roots, basketball has grown to be a wildly popular game. Those early peach baskets have given way to metal rims and nets that witness amazing feats of athleticism and strength. Basketball legends like Michael Jordan, and modern day superstars like Steph Curry keep the game exciting and fresh, and the style of play is constantly evolving. If you have a basketball team in need of custom uniforms to match your excitement and love of the sport, Moneyball Sportswear has you covered! Contact us to get started on a custom basketball team uniform today!

 

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Cheering For Your Child March 21, 2017

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Something crazy is happening in the world of children’s sports with referees having to chastise and even remove people from the game. It’s not the children though… it’s the adults! How have children’s sports become so cutthroat for adults? How can we put the fun back in the game? Read on to see how to enjoy your children’s sporting events without causing them or yourself any embarrassment or negative consequences.

Be a Spectator, Not a Coach

If you are paying for a coach, and for your child to be on a team, then be content to watch the games knowing your child is as prepared as they can be. When children have been interviewed after games to see if they are able to hear or act on advice they hear from the sidelines, the answer is definitively NO. Even more, you could be yelling things at your child that are contradictory to what their coach is telling them; all this does is confuse your child. Let the coach be the coach, and you be the parent. Being there for your child as a spectator is worth more than feeling you also must be the coach. Additionally, you will be able to enjoy yourself more if you relax and just take in the game, instead of putting the burden of coach on yourself as well.

Be Positive

Cheering for kids should be just that… cheery. Yelling at your kids during a game is not helpful to anyone! We have all sat next to someone at a sporting event who is intent on “coaching” all of the players on the field or rink. As awkward as that can be, it is even more troubling when you are sitting next to a parent ripping into their kid’s performance. Your child is not going to respond well to negative criticism while they are in the middle of a sport, and none of the other fans will appreciate your bad attitude either. So keep it positive, and hopefully your kid’s sporting events will be a fun time, instead of a criticism session.

Perspective

If you are watching your child’s games, keep in mind that perspective is important. Of course, you want your child to succeed, to grow, and probably to win. However, winning isn’t everything, and it is important for your kids to know how to lose as well. If you have a good perspective on the matter, they will too. There is a reason that they put signs up at kid’s soccer games that say “This is not the World Cup”; keep in mind the level your kid is at, and act accordingly.

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Hopefully you are already cheerfully enjoying your kid’s sports and games. If not, consider some of the above tips to bring back some positivity and perspective into your spectating. Kids are only young once, make the sporting events of their youth fun and memorable. If you are thinking of getting your child involved in sports, and need team uniforms, check out our great selection!

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