Sports Merit Badge
Requirements for the Sports merit badge:
- Do the following:
- Explain to your counselor the most likely risks you may encounter during athletic activities, and what you should do to anticipate, help prevent, mitigate, and respond to these risks.
- Show that you know first aid or understand the treatment for injuries that could occur while participating in athletics, including sprains, strains, muscle cramps, contusions, abrasions, blisters, dehydration, heat reactions, and concussions.
- Explain the following:
- Before completing requirements 4 and 5, show that you have received a physical examination from your health care practitioner within the last 12 months.
- Explain the importance of the physical exam.
- Explain the importance of maintaining good health habits for life (such as exercising regularly), and how the use of tobacco products, alcohol, and other harmful substances can negatively affect your health and your performance in sports activities
- Explain the importance of maintaining a healthy diet.
- Discuss the following:
- The importance of warming up and cooling down.
- The importance of weight training.
- What an amateur athlete is and the differences between an amateur and a professional athlete.
- The attributes (qualities) of a good sport, the importance of sportsmanship, and the traits of a good team leader and player who exhibits Scout spirit on and off the playing field.
- Take part for one season (or four months) as a competitive individual or as a member of an organized team in TWO of the following sports: baseball, basketball, bowling, cross-country, field hockey, football, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming, table tennis, tennis, track and field, volleyball, water polo, wrestling, cheerleading, and/or badminton. Your counselor may approve in advance other recognized sports, but not any sport that is restricted and not authorized by the BSA. Then with your chosen sports do the following:
- Give the rules and etiquette for the two sports you picked.
- List the equipment needed for the two sports you chose. Describe the protective equipment and appropriate clothing (if any) and explain why it is needed.
- Draw diagrams of the playing areas for your two sports.
- With guidance from your counselor and before beginning requirement 4, establish a personal training program suited to the activities you chose for requirement 4. Do the following:
- Organize a chart and track your training, practice, and development in the sports for one season or four months.
- Demonstrate proper technique for your two chosen sports.
- At the end of the season, share your completed chart with your counselor and discuss how your participation in the sports you chose has affected you mentally and physically.
Apr 16, 2020 - Pendleton
Is it okay to use a previous sports season for this merit badge? Or do you have to start the merit badge and then begin the sports season.
Apr 16, 2020 - Scouter Paul
@Pendleton - Since requirement #4 ties into requirement #5, how would a scout create a training plan with guidance from the merit badge counselor and use it to train for a season that had already been completed? I don't think that's possible.
Apr 17, 2020 - David Willis
When we started our fall MB offerings in the Troop, some Scouts were already in the middle of a sports season. The MB Counselor let them use that current season as one of their sports, but did not let them use a previous/completed season. Their second sport came when winter sports kicked in.
Apr 21, 2020 - Mark Wood
The list of approved sports includes wrestling, football, field hockey, ice hockey and baseball, all of which contain opportunities for serious injury. And yet BSA does not give credit for martial arts (my son is a black belt in karate and competes statewide and nationally through the AAU). Martial arts competitions are tightly regulated and require protective gear and prohibitions on deliberate hard contact. Why are they excluded from sports and athletics merit badges? (Also, I think the requirement for two sports is overkill, as many young athletes focus on a sport for which they show aptitude and expertise. Why not reinforce that through our merit badges?)
Jan 12, 2022 - Rick
I'd love to hear an answer to Mark's question about karate as a sport. He raises a good point. We've got a kid in our Troop who does karate and basketball. It seems like that should qualify.
Jan 19, 2022 - Scouter Paul
Please see the Guide to Safe Scouting for the BSA's reasoning about prohibited activities.
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