Sports are great for kids. They not only teach them about teamwork and good sportsmanship, but they are good for getting the heart rate going and keeping kids fit and healthy. The most important thing to remember when choosing a sport for your child is finding something that your child is interested in. It's also wise to choose a sport which is safe, fun, and age appropriate. For example, soccer and yoga can be started at a very early age. They both help with fine and gross motor skills. However, archery would probably be best for older kids, as arm strength and good eye-hand coordination is essential. A good coach or trainer is a must. Make sure the coach knows about safety and first aid. The coach should also be respectful to the children.
Here are some other sports that kids enjoy doing:
tumbling, gymnastics, karate or other type of martial arts, swimming, diving, dance, bicycling, jump roping, tennis, sailing, rowing, skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, basketball, baseball, softball, golf, lacrosse, horseback riding, volleyball, cheerleading, bowling, cross country running, track and field and more.
Even though sports have so many great benefits, remember that some are more dangerous than others when it comes to accidents and injuries. For example, soccer and football can cause a lot of injuries and head traumas. Yet, swimming and yoga are very gentle on the body and equally beneficial (if not more). When choosing a sport, remember that children's bodies are continually growing and that safety is imperative.
Make sure that your child is wearing the correct gear. Also, they should also stay in shape and stay flexible (remember to stretch). Your child should get a check-up or physical exam before starting a sport to make sure he or she is ready developmentally and physically for the activity. And remember to wear sunscreen, stay cool, and hydrated. Heat-related injuries happen more than we know it.
Don't worry if your child isn't ready to start a sport in Kindergarten. There are so many great activities to do, which will help your child in their growth and development outside of a team sport. Running around and playing at a park, climbing trees in a forest, or digging and running in the sand at the beach is equally important for kids. Just as long as they are moving.