We all know that playing sports is healthy. Not only does it encourage social skills and friendships, but it also gets children active which is a huge part of a healthy lifestyle. The good news is, there are lots of sports to choose from, so it’s likely you’ll find something your child enjoys. Here are a few ways to encourage your child to get involved in sports.
Don’t Force Them
With the rise of computer games, social media and devices for children, it can be harder than ever to tempt young minds into playing sports. The important thing is not to force them into doing a particular sport. Even if you’re a keen football supporter or you’ve been watching tennis since you were a child, your own child may choose something entirely different. Allow them to explore the options, but only invest in equipment when you know your child is serious about playing.
Grace Under Pressure
Every sport is competitive, and competition can take its toll on children. When a child loses a match, it can feel like failure, even when they played their best. In most sports, children aren’t given trophies just for taking part, so learning to lose gracefully is part and parcel of playing sports. It’s also a great life lesson – being a sore loser won’t get your child very far. Teaching your child that losing is okay, as long as they have done their best will set them up for playing any kind of sport.
Give Them What They Need
There are many sports that require parents to make an investment. Sports classes often cost money in themselves, but you may also be required to buy equipment and clothing. For example, youth baseball jerseys aren’t always cheap, but they do make a child feel like part of the team. Having the right equipment isn’t just about looking and feeling good; it’s about giving your child the best chance at succeeding in their chosen sport.
Lower Your Expectations
It’s easy for parents to put pressure on their children without realizing it. It’s important to allow your child to develop at a normal rate, rather than pushing them to achieve things sooner than anyone else. The only role you need to play is that of a supportive parent. Make sure your child attends practice as often as possible and he is surrounded by individuals who will encourage him to do his best.
Choose a Good Coach
Many child athletes stick with their childhood coaches well into adulthood and through their careers. Finding the right coach can take some time, but once you have a good one, they’re worth their weight in gold. Your child’s coach should have a proper teaching technique but also be able to distinguish the differences between each student. Knowing what a student needs and how to bring the best out in them is a talent only few coaches possess.
Remember that your child needs down time while playing any sport in order to create a balanced life.
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