Kids these days are becoming increasingly hooked to computer games and PSPs and the television simply adds on to the woes of the parents. There is a constant deviation from physical activities amongst the kids leaving parents worried. As news about obesity amongst kids rises as among the biggest plagues to haunt children, parents look out for ways and possibilities to get their children interested in some sports activity.
Studies show that playing a particular sport has a number of other benefits for kids in addition besides the usual health and fitness benefits. Not only do sports keep kids active, it helps them concentrate better, improves their social skills and helps them learn and employ sportsmanship. However, in order to establish a childs interest in a specific sport it is imperative that one first analyzes the kids age, size, ability, general interest and skills. Don’t assume all children are natural athletes and it is crucial that we first be aware of the cause of their dislike for sports.
Sports can be a turn-off for kids for a large number of reasons. One of the biggest factors that keeps kids from taking up a specific sport is that they are still at a phase when they are developing their basic skills.
Children below six to seven years of age have shorter attention spans and do not have the capacity to grasp the intricacies of the rules which are required to play organized sports. When children reach this age they are able to understand the sport better and need to rehearse in order to get a hang of the game. The hits and misses while learning how to play can lead to frustration and an ensuing disinterest.
It also has been noted that some kids are reluctant to play team sports as they seem to be too competitive for them. Sports including football, baseball are rigorous and focused on winning which could unnerve them. Maintaining an optimistic environment ensures that the children remain motivated and interested.
Occasionally kids are still undecided upon the game of their choice. They might be more at ease playing individual sports rather than team sports. It is best to let the child explore his / her interests and choose their own. Self consciousness can also be another very significant deterrent. Physical attributes play a critical part in this as smaller kids are likely to feel more intimidated. It’s very important to be able to channelize the childs energies in the right direction and keep them from getting frustrated.
Some of the best sports to get kids involved with are basketball, baseball, football, ice hockey and soccer amongst team sports and gymnastics, horse riding, skating and soccer amongst individual sports. Parents must understand that imposing a specific sporting activity upon a child certainly won’t help in developing the childs interest in the game.
Once the child discovers his or her own interest, they will find their own league. Infact, the emphasis needs to be on kids getting enough physical activity by means of any exercise, whether it is sports or free play. This initial patience when exercised can result in long term benefits by helping your child develop his / her fascination with a sports activity that will last a lifetime.