Benefits of Your Kids Playing Sports

As a parent, it is difficult to figure out activities for your children. How many activities should we commit to? Which activities would my child enjoy? How will these activities be beneficial to my kids?

Parents have so many options when it comes to activities that it can be hard to make those decisions, and we should always look to our kids and take note of their personal interests to help guide our decisions.

We should also try to give our children a variety of experiences including encouraging them to try various sports! There are a lot of benefits to kids being involved in athletics - regardless of the sport. Sports (when balanced with other activities) give children the opportunity to grow into well-rounded, confident, hard-working adults.

Here are 10 reasons that playing sports can be great for kids…

  1. They might love it! Many kids are craving an outlet for their energy. They might fall in love with the idea that they can go someplace and be encouraged to run faster and jump higher! Sports can be an amazing outlet for fun and exercise, and there is a lot of variety to pick from. Let them try different sports and see if there is one that they truly fall in love with.
  2. There is a way to be age-appropriate. Involving your kid in sports at a young age does not mean that they are going to be taken out of your home and moved across the country to train to be a world-class athlete at the age of five. It is up to you as the parent to keep tabs on what is reasonable for you particular child and their personality.
  3. It’s okay to push your kids a little bit. We shouldn’t always shy away from pushing our children when they need a nudge. We certainly encourage our children to read, write, and learn math. We don’t think twice about making them go to school every single morning. Yet when it comes to sports (that can also be very valuable to their development) we shy away from regular practices.
  4. Signing up for competitive/successful teams has benefits. If your child is going to put in the time and effort, why not make sure that they are getting the most out of it that they can? Competitive teams often mean that your child is surrounded by knowledgeable coaches and motivated peers. They will be able to learn core skills that will benefit them down the road.
  5. There are incredible life lessons to be learned. Sports offer an amazing learning experience for life-lessons. Kids are able to see the importance of hard work because they see first-hand that the more they practice, the better they get! They are able to understand the value in taking calculated risks - you’ll never score a goal if you don’t take the shot. They learn how to respect their coaches and be a good teammate to those around them. They begin to understand that some days you win and some days you lose.
  6. Doors will open to unique opportunities. If your child falls in love with a sport and commits to it, there may be some really cool opportunities that come their way! Traveling to competitions, being a part of unique community, even achieving a college scholarship. Children are able to gain perspective and maturity through the unique experiences that sports provide along the way.
  7. What else are they going to be doing with that time? Be honest… if your child did not go to sports practice, what would they be doing? Watching TV? Bickering? Jumping off the furniture? Wouldn’t you rather them be in the fresh air at soccer practice, running around and learning the value of teamwork? Sports remain incredibly important as they grow into teenagers as well and put their time and effort into something productive.
  8. They will not be missing out. Similarly, we as parents often worry about our kids missing out on their childhood - and rightfully so! We don’t want to turn our children into little athlete robots, but there can always be a balance. Your child might not actually want to be normal - maybe they want to be extraordinary! Parents should always listen to their gut and take cues from their kids. If it seems like too much, maybe it is. If your kid is asking for more, let them try it!
  9. College scholarships are a reality. To be fair, some sports are much more competitive than others when it comes to college scholarships; but even with that being considered, they are certainly not out of reach! If your child falls in love with a sport, they may be able to continue on and receive a free (or heavily discounted) college education. Competing collegiately would also give them a built-in support network and community in their teammates at college.
  10. Teammates become family. When sports are an integral part of your child’s life, their teammates become their best friends. They are able to share the good days and the bad and create connections that will last well into adulthood! When you train side by side with someone for hours each and every week, that bond doesn’t just disappear.

Are sports for everyone? Nope. But is it something that kids could at least try and have fun with? Absolutely! Whether they do it for 1 year or 10 years, sports could still teach them valuable life lessons while having fun along the way.

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