Sports are a great way for kids to build self-confidence, teamwork, and social skills, both of which are crucial as adults. They help to facilitate proper communication, provide great exercise, and keep them mentally and physically stimulated while giving you a much needed break as well!
When helping your child choose a sport, it's important to consider their mental and physical strengths and weaknesses, and interests to determine which sport is best for them.
Some things to consider when helping your child choose a sport are below:
1. Age. Age can be a big factor when helping your child choose the best sport for them. Your child’s age will determine how well they will be able to focus on sports, as well as how well they are able to physically perform them.
2. Personal interest. Don’t try to live vicariously through your child by forcing them into the same sport you did in school. That’s not fair to them. Give them the freedom to choose what they are most interested in and allow them to try it. They may need to try several different sports to determine how well they like them, so be patient and allow them that choice.
3. Temperament. Some kids are more introverted and some are more extroverted. For a shy child, a contact sport may not be the best fit, and instead running or intramural sports may be better. The same goes if your child is extroverted. They may not like solo sports and may thrive best in a team environment.
4. Physical traits and strengths. This one is subjective, but there are sports that may be better suited to different body types. For example, a long and lean kid may do best at running, basketball, or volleyball, where height can be an advantage, whereas a smaller child may be better at water sports or something that requires them to be more agile or speedy. This is not to say that a shorter child can’t excel at basketball, or a long and lean child can’t excel at gymnastics. It’s just something you may want to consider when helping them choose a sport.
5. Cost. How much can you or do you want to spend on getting your child into sports? Depending on the sport, affordability can vary. Be sure to budget and consider the cost of enrolling your child in the sport to see if you can realistically afford it.
To read and learn more about how to help your child choose a sport, click here!