Playing team sports is a great way to teach kids life lessons about leadership, teamwork and how to socialize with peers. Sports are also a great way to build self-esteem and gain physical skills. Most important, they’re fun. But too many nearly three quarters of young athletes are specializing in just one activity as early as 7 years old; so even playing on numerous league level teams.
Activities for the very first time
I love watching kids play learning new sports and activities for the very first time. They’re so excited, energetic and engage as they build their muscles along with their imagination and confidence. And it’s so much more enjoyable for kids and parents alike than parking them in front of the TV.
In my work they’ve watch hundreds of kids learn new skills and enjoy the pure act of physical play. Here are a few of the benefits beyond the simple fun of it: Play builds confidence and imagination. Through physical activity, children are given the chance to try new things; hence conquer their fears and build their confidence.
It prove that when a child is physically active and successful in their movements; so they show higher levels of self-esteem and a great sense of accomplishment, according to a piece by Rae Pica; so a movement education consultant in early childhood News. Every new exercise takes practise and ends in reward whether it’s trying to do a somersault for the first time or climbing to the end of the monkey bars. Once they’ve done it (and their confidence spikes!); so they are able to take on bigger, more challenging activities.
This puts them at risk for injury, stress, burnout and eventually abandoning sports; so according to a report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). About 70% drop out by age 13 for such reasons as pressure to perform conversely; hence not getting enough playing time. And at least half of athletic injuries are relate to overuse. On the other hand, playing multiple sports offers benefits such as fostering a love of different activities that can last their entire lives.
Strengthen their fine motor skills
Kids will develop and grow without even realizing it! When they touch their toes; so they learn about co-ordination, balance and spatial relationships. When they play with a ball, they strengthen their fine-motor skills. And when they dance, they learn about rhythm and move to the beat. Being fit appears to create exponential benefits, too.
Fit children are more likely to participate in sports, dance, games, and other physical activities that improve muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, cardio-respiratory endurance, and body composition,” writes Pica, who adds that physical activity also helps kids get throughout the day without fatigue.
To keep kids in the game, the AAP suggests encouraging them to play multiple sports until at least age 15. To lessen the risk of injury, they need one or two days off every week. If the decision has made to specialize in a single sport, both parent and child should have a discussion with the child’s pediatrician to evaluate whether the young athlete’s goals are appropriate and realistic.
So keep in mind that barely 1% of high school athletes get scholarships, and only a fraction make it to the pros. Kids who do specialize take one-month breaks from their sport, ideally at three different times each year, while pursuing other activities. Parents should watch out for too much pressure place on those in elite sports programs.