For our Blog post this month we have a guest blogger Cloe Matheson, the founder of Cloe Writes here to give a new and fresh flare of reading material for us Sleepytotters.
How to Teach Kids to Love Sports
Physical activity is essential to a healthy lifestyle. For young children, this is extra important. Along with keeping them engaged, exercise maintains the health and well-being of children. The best way to get kids interested in exercising is through sports, but sometimes it can be hard getting them started. As a parent, helping your child to choose the right sport can seem tricky, but every kid has their favourite. It's only a matter of choosing the right one. Whether they love spending time out on the playground or prefer staying indoors, there's an activity for all of them. Here's how to teach kids to love sports.
The main thing about sports is that it's supposed to be fun. If you're a parent looking for what your child might enjoy as a sport, see what they find fun. If they're an outdoors type, then take them out cycling, or get them involved in team sports like soccer or rugby. Maybe they don't like going outside a lot: there are activities like indoor rock climbing or trampoline halls that are open all year round. It's good for children to know that sports can be enjoyable rather than something that's required. Having fun is the first and most important step to getting kids involved in sports.
Importance of Socialising
Sports can be more than exercise and activity. For kids and even adults, sport is a great way to bond with other people. It could be through friendly competition in games of tennis, or through cooperation in team games like netball. It's good to get kids playing sports with each other whenever possible. With sport that isn't team based, like swimming, you can create competition out of it: try timed laps, or races. Team sports are inclined to cooperation and teamwork, which make for important life skills to develop in kids. Orienting sport around socialising also compels children to pursue it out of their own wishes. It's harder to skip the weekly soccer game if it means letting your teammates down.
For some people, sports are more than just engagement. It can become a lifestyle as well. Immersing kids in the world of sports can be a great motivator towards helping them stay involved. The level of involvement is up to you. If it's their birthday or Christmas, think about getting sports gear instead of their usual toys or gadgets. Watching certain kinds of sports on TV is an easy way to get their interest: big events like the FIFA world cup or Super Bowl are always exciting to watch. Going out to a live match is also a great way to immerse the kids, especially if they like games like cricket or baseball. Just be sure to keep them protected from the sun — those matches can last a while.
Pictured: Aloka Lights
Lead by Example
Perhaps the most important tip of all? Lead by example. Kids usually emulate their parents, and if their parents aren't doing it, neither will the kids. It doesn't have to be a dedicated program or regime, it just means joining in when you can. Go swimming with them, practice hoops together, or teach them new tricks. Kids learn by observing, and what better way to learn than seeing you involved?
Getting kids started with sports can be hard and keeping them interested even harder. If you're struggling, just remember that the most important part of getting them involved is about fun. It's up to the kids to choose what sports they embrace, and it's up to you to encourage them. Whether it's fencing, martial arts or hockey, get them involved and let them have fun.
Cloe Matheson resides in the lovely South Island city of Dunedin, New Zealand. As a freelance writer, she has penned articles for various sites and blogs. Discover more of Cloe’s work on herblog