Sports are often seen as a leisure activity for children. As far as benefits are concerned, parents realise that the exercise is naturally good for them but they often don’t consider much else. There are plenty of children out there that don’t have much of an interest in sports, and that’s fine. However, if they are not engaging in sports of any kind, then they may be missing out on vital benefits that can have a large impact on their development. As a parent, you might not be particularly interested in sports either and so you’ve not really considered your child’s lack of interest. If that is the case, you may need to put aside your own feelings and try to encourage your child to play sports. It is never advisable to push your child into doing something that they don’t want to do, instead you should work with them to help them find a sport that they enjoy. If you force them to participate in a sport that they don’t like, they will not reap the benefits. So, what are those benefits?
Why Are You Reluctant?
There are a few different reasons that parents might not want their children to play sports, but by not encouraging, you are only hurting them. One issue is that parents feel they cannot afford the equipment. There are always ways around it though. You can use Sports Direct discount codes to get good quality sports equipment at an affordable price. Another issue people have is that they had bad experiences when they were younger. You cannot let your own experiences hold your child back, you just need to make sure that they are happy and safe when they are playing, if they aren’t then try another sport.
As we’ve already said, exercise is one of the main benefits of getting your child involved with sports. It didn’t use to be such an issue when kids would spend most of their time outside, running around and playing. These days, children are spending increasing amounts of time inside on the computer or watching TV. Trying to get them out of the house can be a struggle, especially once they get a bit older. There are also a lot more concerns about safety when it comes to letting your child play outside on their own. Having a scheduled sporting activity that they can attend ensures that they are getting regular exercise in a safe environment.
Child obesity is a growing problem, and it can easily creep up on you. A lot of children gain a bit of extra weight as they start to grow. As a result of this, parents often don’t notice that there is a problem until it has gotten quite bad. We often fall into the trap of thinking that this extra weight will drop off again once they start getting taller. That is often not the case, and before you know it, your child is battling weight issues. Getting them into a good exercise routine early on by having them play sports is one of the best ways to combat this.
Exercise is also important for healthy development of the bones and joints. If your child isn’t active from a young age, they are more likely to experience problems in the future. By encouraging exercise when they are a child, they are more likely to continue this into adulthood and reduce the risk of the health problems that are associated with old age.
Children make the majority of their friends at school. That’s great, but it is a limited circle of friends that have the same experiences as them a lot of the time. By joining a local sports team, they have the opportunity to meet children from other schools. Being friends with people from a wider range of backgrounds means that your child has a more rounded view of the world.
Sport is also a great unifier when it comes to race and religion. People from all walks of life can enjoy sports and get along with one another because they have a common interest. In the current climate, there are a lot of racial and religious tensions. These are exacerbated by the media and, if your child doesn’t have a yardstick by which to measure these attitudes, they are more susceptible to them. Once they are older, it will be harder to combat these negative attitudes, so having them mix with people from different races and religions from a young age can help them to understand that these prejudices are unfounded and ensure that they are a more tolerant person.
Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of playing sports is the values that your child will learn. Fairness is one of the big ones. By learning to play within the confines of the rules, they will gain a better understanding of why it is important for people to be treated fairly and equally. The rules of the game will also help them to learn the significance of proper authority. Because they have to adhere to the rules, and the referee is there to mediate this, they will understand that breaking rules has consequences. This attitude will filter through to all aspects of their life, meaning that they will be better behaved at home and at school. This moral code that sports instills in them will carry on in later life.
Making a commitment to play every week will teach them responsibility from a young age. If a parent has used
Teamwork is another value that your child will pick up from playing sports. This is particularly helpful for an only child, who may have less experience of working with other children outside of school. Good teamwork skills are an integral part of life for anybody. When they grow up and start applying for their first job, being able to demonstrate that they are a good team player and use their sporting history as an example is sure to impress. Playing as part of a team is another great way of improving your child’s social skills which, again, will help them in all aspects of their life.
Lack of self esteem is another growing problem amongst young people. Having the encouragement of a good coach, and experiencing success with their team will help to build valuable levels of self esteem that can combat larger problems, such as anxiety, in their teenage years.
Mental health problems in children is a very hot topic at the moment. Levels seem to be increasing dramatically, due to a number of factors. The stress that your children are under at school is one of the main contributors and, although steps are being taken to combat this, you still need to be aware of it yourself. It has already been established that exercise is a brilliant tool for adults that are experiencing mental health issues and the same is true for children.
Exercise is one of the greatest stress relievers out there. If your child is under a lot of pressure and it is having a negative effect on their wellbeing, sitting indoors will only make things worse. Getting outside and doing some exercise can help them to channel all of that stress into something productive. Meeting with friends to play sports will also help them to take their minds off whatever it is that is causing them to be stressed in the first place.
Anger problems can be curbed by exercise as well. A child that has lots of pent up aggression needs an outlet for it. Heavy exercise can be that outlet, and you’ll find that they will be much calmer afterwards.
I hope I have demonstrated the importance of exercise for a child’s development and you will consider encouraging your child to join a local team.