How much Sport for young kids?

February 5, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Posted in 1 | Leave a comment
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I believe that kids should try many different activities from the ages of 7/8 to the ages of 14/16. These are the years that the child develops in many ways- emotionally the child learns to react to adversity, challenge, and being fantastic at something; physically the child is growing and becoming engaged with how her/his body functions as well as the brain create synaptic connections, the more the body does the more synaptic connections get created. I have seen many children who are encouraged to limit themselves in one activity- be it a sport or artistic endeavor- and by the time they are between 12 and 14 moat have lost interest in that activity, their self-esteem has diminished seriously, and it takes a great deal of time, effort, and often money to get the child back to being strong and confident.

On the other hand- knowing the kids who get to the Olympics, X-Games, and to the highest levels for their ages, the great majority of them had more than one activity as a child.

The concern comes about what is too much- and I am afraid to say there is no pat answer. But I do think that we are often afraid of putting too much on our children. So what can you do to keep you child from having too much to do?

Notice the anxiety level YOU have about getting your child to each event on time- If you are frantic, it’s too much for your child.

Notice how your child talks about the practices/games- Is there enthusiastic talk or has the whole thing become a duty- no different than homework or other “duties”? If the program has become a duty its time to reevaluate.

And finally its super important as a parent to understand that all this is fatiguing, and it can be a great thing to by fatigued by physical activity, much better than being bored from sitting around and playing videos or watching youtube all afternoon!

Let your 7 or 8 year old do as many things as YOU are able to support- both financially and especially mentally and emotionally.

As your children grow they will find what they love, even if it isn’t your desire for them, and settle into that area with total abandon when they come to it from their own desire and free will.

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