A child either is or isn’t an athlete and there’s no in between. But, knowing that isn’t simple for sure. Let’s understand how we can encourage our kids’ athletic pursuits.
We as parents try giving every opportunity possible to our kids. We sign them up for recreational activities, make sure they have all the gears they need, fill their water bottles, prepare healthy smoothies for that extra energy, join them to practices in all kinds of weather and cheer them up from the crowd.
Besides all that boost and fun, sports kids learn so much more in real life, which is beyond your knowledge. They learn team spirit, leadership, coordination, physical strength and interpersonal skills. Learning to cope with loss and frustration is something athletes learn quite early. Respecting coaches, supporting team members are some more traits that they imbibe early on. These qualities not only work on-field but off-field as well.
We asked lot many “Star Moms” of “Star Athletes” who gave us some useful insights. Let’s learn how their parental dedication and encouragement helped in raising a gifted athlete:
Identify Your Child’s Strengths.
It is very important on the part of parents to observe and identify that one activity which excites her. There are so many sports that your kids may love and develop physical skills through it. Also, it’s important to think outside the box when it comes to sports like bowling, badminton, Frisbee, etc.
Be An Active Part Of The Process.
Your active participation is key to their success in that activity. You need not have to be their coach, but get involved, like practice with them at home or help them pick out the right equipment or clothes. Always keep an eye on the coach and the peers to understand any kind of unfair treatment. And the secret formula? Never fail to feel proud about your kids for giving “their best” even if they lose.
This quality is “gold” for all athletes. But, how does a child inculcate this? Yes, we parents can help! Your child’s performance in sports is strongly affected by your attitude and behavior towards the sport, the coach, and other kids in the team. Always remember that it isn’t always about winning or losing, but about being a part of the team, meeting new people, and most importantly having fun. Stay calm and positive!
Make Out What’s Not Fun And Why.
Working in teams may have a negative impact on kids. They may get worried and anxious by better players. When you observe that your kiddo suddenly wants to quit a team or that sport altogether , it’s a red signal. The best way to make out what’s going in your kid’s mind is to sit down and ask him all possible questions. Like, Are you enjoying the sport? If not, why? This way you get a doorway to your child’s emotions and root cause of the problem.
More Play, Less Pressure.
Its crucial to identify what sport your kid loves to play. Don’t pressurize him to play a sport of your choice. Let him dabble with few before he zeroes-in on one. So, encourage your kids to experiment.
Besides finding great programs and coaches to help teach proper movement, it’s essential to give kids time to explore and self-evaluate. Free play is essential for athletic development.
Balance Is The Key.
You as a parent need to know where you need to stop and let your child be. Your kid will develop his strategies to face all the challenges in coming years.
For some more useful insights, read this book.
We know that parents cannot always shape their child’s athletic abilities, but they can be their biggest “support system”.
So go ahead and encourage your children to take up their favorite activities to become stars in their respective games. Let them earn their own titles.
We would love to hear from you about your thoughts, tips and tricks.