I was happy to hear today when my daughter went to the doctor for her yearly checkup that the amount of hours she will be practicing this year is not excessive or a cause for concern. My daughter is 8 and will practice 4 days a week for about 13 hours plus meets. When I talk to friends and co-workers I always get negative comments that it is too many hours so I was surprised when the doctor thought it was great that she was getting so much exercise. When I asked if it was too hard on her body she said absolutely no, the only thing she was concerned about was getting her school work done. My daughter who is going into 3rd grade is very good about doing her homework and last year even got an outstanding achievement award. She also has to keep up her grades or she could get kicked off the team. It is also refreshing that the doctor was very postive and did not mention any negative comments about the sport that alot of people seem to have.