Youth sports is a great avenue for our children to learn many of life’s lessons such as teamwork, fighting through and overcoming adversity, and setting goals for self improvement. Just like anything else in life, there are positives and negatives. So before you sign your son or daughter up for your, er, their favorite sport, I would suggest that you have a family conversation and explain the options. Most importantly, make sure that your son or daughter has input into what they want to do.
As a parent, your primary job is to raise your children. That means instructing them in things like your family religion, basic education, discipline, and of course, providing safety for them. This last one is an area that many parents are often left to guess as to what is the best course of action in many areas. Education is the key. Also, very important is being realistic about what lies ahead and what the potential downfalls might be. So here are a few things to put on your list to consider:
- Sports is playing a game. It can be a lot of fun. It should be fun. But as your child moves up the ladder, if they want to improve their skills, there will be work. It may not always be fun. But that doesn’t mean that it won’t be rewarding. Working to reach individual and team goals is the rewarding part of sports.
- Your child most likely will get hurt. A friend who is a local chiropractor pointed out one study that shows that 97% of all people who play football will sustain some trauma to their body during their “career.” This might mean bumps and bruises, but it could also mean sprains, broken bones, concussions, and even death. Injuries are germane to any sport. There are steps that can be taken to reduce and hopefully prevent injury. But injuries are a part of the game. Are you and your children prepared for this? And on a good note, sometimes working through an injury can help improve your child’s character. But there is a choice that must be made. And you must live with that choice.
- Part of sports means letting go of your children and entrusting them to other adults for periods of time. You must respect the fact that the coach is the head of the team and it is their team. They will not always do things the way you think they should. This can be a growing time for parents as well as their children.
These are just a few things to consider. To help your child enjoy their youth sports experience, you might want to purchase my book, YOUTH SPORTS; THREE IMPORTANT STEPS TO HELPING YOUR CHILD ENJOY THE EXPERIENCE. You can find my book on Amazon for Kindle or in paperback by clicking here.
Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a happy holiday season to you and your families.