This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Design Approach for Youth Sports Equipment: Designing for the Children




Foster, Owen

Type of Degree



Industrial Design


Children are increasingly exposed to more sports activities and organizations and have more opportunities to participate in them than ever before. These activities are viewed as learning and development tools for the youth of today and tomorrow. As a result of this, the sporting goods market offers a wide variety of equipment and supplies that cater to the needs of the consumer. Unfortunately the design behind this youth equipment is simply a smaller scale of the adult model instead of a custom design for children. With children developing in rapid stages, they tend to have different weaknesses and strengths that need to be considered within the design and development of products that would fit their needs better. By taking data from several major fields and studying children playing sports, my thesis will approach the design of youth sports equipment with the child in mind. The focus group will be aimed at the male athlete aged eight to 10 years old. Instead of choosing a broad study of this subject, this thesis is focused on baseball so as to provide a clear example of the subject in the market. The aim of this study will be to prove that if sports equipment is designed for children, children have a greater potential for enjoyment and success in the sport they choose to pursue.