Youth Sports #215

How do we help children develop a love of physical pursuits without overwhelming their growing bodies with strict training regimens and early competition? This has become an important topic of conversation as information continues to surface about the long-term impact of concussions and repetitive injuries. Today we speak with Rich Smith and Carrie McCusker—two seasoned coaches and educators—about keeping young athletes safe, healthy and happy.


Photo by Peter Frank Edwards


Carrie McCusker, endurance coach and athlete living in Cape Elizabeth, Maine

Carrie McCusker

Carrie McCusker is an endurance coach based in Cape Elizabeth. She has been an athlete her entire life. Starting with youth soccer Carrie spent time on just about every playing field surface. She competed at national events as a Nordic skier during high school in Alaska and then ad Middlebury College in Vermont. After earning a masters degree in education, she combined her love of teaching with her passion for athletics and became a full time professional coach.

Rich Smith, fifth grade teach and sports coach in Yarmouth, Maine

Rich Smith

Rich Smith has been a fifth grade teacher in Yarmouth for 30 years and he has coached three sports a year for just about all 30. For 27 of them, he has been the head coach for Yarmouth girls’ soccer team.

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