When we’re young, we try a whole host of different sporting activities, and naturally, when we’re watching our child discover the sports we enjoyed we want them to be good at them. But we all know those parents who are way too invested in their child’s sporting prowess (or lack of). This type of parenting might bring some sporting glory, but it’ll also most likely dampen the child’s enthusiasm for the sport and may also fracture the child/parent bond, too. For your child to get the most out of sport, you need to find the right balance.
Letting Them Find Their Feet
Very few children take up a sport and find they have an instant talent for it. It takes time, and it’ll involve going through a few sports that your child patently isn’t good at (and more importantly, doesn’t enjoy) before they find the one that’s right for them. When they do, they need room to grow into their new hobby without the pressure of having to perform. It should all be about having fun, basically!
Getting Involved and Rewarding the Right Moments
When they’ve found their sport, it’s good to be encouraging without being too pushy. You can keep a hands-on approach while also getting involved by coaching the sporting team. This will allow you to keep a close eye on your child’s progress while also simultaneously learning about the sport at the same time. The nature of a child’s sports team can determine how much they enjoy it; with you at the helm, you’ll be able to make sure it’s a friendly and encouraging sports team. Let competition be a secondary issue. If it’s a cricket team, look at cricket trophies by Premier Trophies and get them for the whole team. If it’s a football team, make it a social thing and take the team to a football match. In the end, a child will only become great at a sport they enjoy!
Knowing When To Push
That being said, there does come a time when you might need to push your child to do more. If they’re playing well and training hard, then that’s all you can ask, but if they start to let standards slip – let’s say, skipping training and not taking matches seriously – then you should be having a conversation with them about the integrity and inherent professionalism of sport. It might be that they’re losing interest, but if you can guide them gently back toward the sport, it might rekindle their interest.
In the end, you’ll know pretty early on just how far your child can go in their chosen sport. By the time they reach teenage years it’ll become clear whether they’ll go on to have success or if it’ll just be a sport they played when they young. If it’s the latter, then that shouldn’t mean they give up straight away – sticking with a sports team through thick and thin can teach valuable life lessons that will hold them in good stead throughout life.