Parenting is tough. One might think that after enduring a nine-month pregnancy, the hard part is finally over. As experienced parents will tell you, that’s not the case – far from it in fact. Instead of finishing the game, you’ve only just put on your uniform and started warming up.
Aside from providing food, clothing, room and board, you’re also expected to somehow turn your children into respectable members of society. Without a fail-safe manual or previous experience, you might seem destined to fail. Luckily, society has implemented sporting programs and athletic organizations to help your child learn, make new friends and obtain invaluable experiences. Here are five reasons you should consider introducing your child to the world of sports.
1. Make new friends – Watching your child traverse the new and sometimes brutal terrain of social interaction can be tough. Sports provide a venue where, together, children work towards a common goal. Relationships made while overcoming obstacles often form the strongest bonds. Encouraging your child to play sports is a great way to help them make new, lasting friendships.
2. Learn how to learn – Whether it’s perfecting their jump shot, getting the perfect spiral or memorizing certain plays and formations, sports are full of learning. While learning sports related skills is important for athletic success, learning how to learn will translate into every facet of life your child enters into. At school, a new job or an interesting hobby, being able to pick up the nuances of something new is a tool that everyone needs.
3. Experience failure and success – Every athletic competition has two things in common – a winner and a loser. Your child can learn valuable lessons from both outcomes. Losing is never easy, especially when you’ve put in the necessary work to win. Helping your child understand how to use a setback as motivation is valuable. Maybe more important is helping your child learn how to handle victory with class, while staying motivated to continue improving. Sports will prepare your child for whatever life throws at them.
4. Begin a healthy lifestyle – Giving your child habits that will help them later in life is one of the biggest responsibilities as a parent – including the habit of health. Instilling a healthy lifestyle into your child will open up many doors for them down the road, from hobbies such as hiking and biking to enjoying being active with their kids. Health is easier maintained than it is obtained, and sports will help your child maintain a healthy lifestyle.
5. Become a leader – Leadership isn’t something you get from reading a book or an online blog. Yes, applications and principles can be better understood from literature, but the only way to develop them is to practice them in real life situations. Sports provide the perfect training ground to develop better communication, critical thinking, accountability and humility. Learning these lessons as a child, instead of later in life at their first job, will give your child a huge advantage.
As the parent, the choice is yours. The benefits are there, and while there will be obstacles to overcome in the arena of
athletics, the pros outweigh the cons.