Unlike in the olden days, there are many sports options from which kids can make a more deliberate selection. And just as there are a variety of sporting activities unique in their offerings, children are different from one another. While some kids prefer to stay glued to their books and enjoy being indoors, others are active and interested in outdoor play. It might be challenging to identify the ideal healthy sports for kids with the wide range of options available, but understanding your child will assist you in making the best decision.
In this read, we’ll look at eight(8) ways you can find a healthy sport your child will enjoy and play passionately.
8 Ways Parents Can Help Choose Healthy Sports for Kids
#1 Assess Your Child’s Activity Level
Before introducing your child to any sport, you should check how active they are. Naturally, quiet and introverted kids tend to shy away from sports that require much energy and action. ***
But before you typecast your child based on their activity level, understand that they are prone to change as they are exposed to various sports. Your quiet one might find their much-needed stimulation in a high-impact sport like football, ice hockey, or running. Similarly, a child who spends hours playing outside may decide that their free, unstructured play provides enough stimulation and choose a low-impact sport like skating, swimming, or rowing.
After assessing your child’s activity level, we advise coming up with a list of low-impact sports. Throw in some high-impact sports you think they may like.
#2 Expose Your Child to Different Sports
To find perfect and healthy sports for kids, you may need to expose them to several options. One easy way to start is to take your child to watch different games and even let them try. Doing this may help you understand where their interest lies.
Without exposing your child to several sports, it will be difficult to tell if they enjoy playing a sport or engage in it because it’s available.
#3 Watch Out For Their Interests
After exposing your kid to different options, you can quickly figure out what kind of sport they fancy. And by interacting with them, you can learn what they like and dislike about each sport. You could ask why they enjoy watching a particular sport and whether they think playing with friends will make the experience any more enjoyable.
Most times, your child may love a handful of sports at first, but when you give time and adequate attention to each, you can pick out what interests them most.
#4 Find Out Your Child’s Preference: Team or Individual Sports
While some kids prefer to play alone, some always want to play with their friends. This trait will inform you about the sport your child will love.
If your child performs better in group activities than when put alone, they will excel in team sports. And if your child is independent, you should consider individual sports like karate or table tennis.
#5 Match the Sport With Your Child’s Physique
Your child’s stature may help you determine the sport they are likely to excel in. Youngsters who are tall and slim tend to perform better in sports like basketball and track, whereas short and stocky children may easily compete in games like football.
It’s normal to see shorter than average athletes in basketball, so no child should be restricted to sports because of their stature. But at an early age, their physical appearance greatly influences their chances of success.
#6 Consider Your Child’s Health Status
Choosing healthy sports for kids also requires medical check-ups and physical examinations. Most times, kids get hurt during sports because they are not physically prepared or unaware of a physical constraint. But with your doctor’s permission, you are sure to choose the sport that wouldn’t threaten your child’s health.
#7 Check With Your Budget
You’ll want to consider the cost of sports items before deciding to go all out when choosing a sport for your child. You might be surprised to learn how expensive gear like soccer cleats and tennis rackets can be. Not to mention the travel expenses you may incur.
Before enrolling your child in a sport, you’ll want to list everything they may need, from helmets, gloves, and ski pants to hockey sticks, shoulder pads, goggles, and other appropriate sports gear, with their estimated prices. Then you can decide if you have enough to keep them playing or will prefer to have them play a cost-effective one.
Buying pre-owned items is one way to lower the strain of your child’s sport on your budget.
Once you have been able to help your child find a sport, you’ll want to ensure they continue successfully in it. Assume the role of their coach and friend and help them practice. Maintain open communication so they can talk to you when facing difficulty.
Also, try to attend their games, so you can also assess their progress and boost their morale.
Other Helpful Tips
- Be sure you are not tilting your kids towards the sport you love without paying attention to their interests.
- Be patient with your child. Sometimes it may take a while for your child to fit in. Enjoy the process and be supportive.
- As much as most children love sports, others may not love the idea. So, if your child is not so interested in sports, you can follow the tips above to find out what they love and help them channel their energy there.