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Putting kids in sports

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Old 05-02-2012, 09:05 AM   #1
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Default Putting kids in sports

The recent HS sports topic got me thinking,

Advice from you moms about how you got your kids into sports?

My son is 2 and we're starting to think about this in the future (sorry, we're in Montreal and kids start hockey when in diapers LOL).

I want him to play sports but of course want him to do the one he loves (hockey or ballet, whatever).

How do you help them explore and choose an interest?
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:17 AM   #2
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Where I live a lot if places will give u a free day or weeks worth of lessons for free to try ut before committing. My boys have tried just about everything and eventually found what they love. 2 is a bit young in my opinion but if you have something like a YMCA they always offer toddler courses that do a week of a different sport. Nice way to try out multiple things too. The only rule I enforced till the end with my children was once the sign up they are committed till the end no matter how much they decide they don't like it.
If you have friends with children that play a sport take him to a game and after have him try it out while you are still there to see if he takes an interest.
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:21 AM   #3
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Swimming was simply mandatory - we live in Michigan and given all the water sports, being a capable swimmer was required. DS13 started with swimming lessons at 5, got talked into joining the local team by his instructor, and stuck with it for 4 years. At the middle school level, things start to get really competitive, and he didn't love it enough to do it 5 days a week. End of swimming, in a formal setting, but he is still a water baby and takes every opportunity to spend hours in a pool or lake. He has all the right traits to be an awesome distance swimmer; I hope in HS he'll go back and give it a chance.

He plays basketball and soccer with his school league. Because it's a small private school, he gets to play a lot and the emphasis is teamwork over win/lose. Dad taught him the basics of golf, which we all play. He really doesn't have a competitive bone in his body (like his mom), and I recognize that, so we focus on fun and competency. I am trying to let him enjoy being active - I just go where he leads. It sounds like next winter will be skiing!
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:31 AM   #4
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I think it's awesome that you're thinking about this now. My parents put me into sports when I was 5 and I think it's one of the best things they could have done for me.

They lucked out and happened to pick the one I loved on the first try (soccer).
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:33 AM   #5
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I agree with letting them try different things and seeing what they love - mind you DS is only 4 so I'm still figuring this out, lol. He's been in swimming lessons since 2 and he absolutely adores it. And since January he has been in a one hour a week sports program that teaches them the fundamentals of 8 different sports, he has a blast! From that, he decided he wanted to try soccer this year, so we're starting that in a few weeks....he also loves playing road hockey and does that a lot too...we also did skating lessons...lol jeez sounds like a lot! He is just a very active physical boy and needs to be moving most of the day. I'm planning on getting him into gymnastics as well...I just want him to be able to try everything and see what he likes and go from there!
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Old 05-02-2012, 10:59 AM   #6
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Default re:

I also recommend the YMCA. They usually have a wide variety of options and are not competitive at the little kid level.

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Old 05-02-2012, 11:56 AM   #7
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My son is 11 now and in baseball. I started him in soccer when he was 5. I think the best thing to do is just put him in whatever is available depending on the season. Once he gets older (11 or 12), he'll be able to verbalize what he actually likes doing.
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Old 05-02-2012, 12:59 PM   #8
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I think just by exposing kids to different kinds of sports will help the child determine what they are most interested in. My son will take swim lessons this summer (as much for safety as exercise), he has a soccer ball/net, he goes on the golf course with my mom and has his own club and he has a football. The sport the family loves most is baseball so my son is naturally more drawn to that just because it's on all summer long! He's being exposed to all sports just by being outside and playing with the stuff.
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Old 05-02-2012, 01:43 PM   #9
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Having two teen boys, I find that their favorite sport is whatever they are playing at that moment! Sports come in seasons, so they tend to put their heart into something for the season, then move to the next one. In reality, what kids gravitate towards is based more on what their friends are doing, and whether a team is a winning or losing team......most kids would rather not play at all than to be on a losing team. Some kids have a passion for one sport, but most of the ones I see just follow the seasons with their friends. Expose him to many sports when he is young and he will let you know what he wants to do. My kids didn't have a clue that they would LOVE soccer until they actually tried it. Then suddenly they'll give up a sport they love and one arm and one leg for a girlfriend who isn't into sports. ??????? Saves a TON of $$ on snowboarding/lift tickets though.....thank you girlfriend!
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Old 05-02-2012, 01:54 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the great advice!

Don't worry he doesn't do much more right now except run around at a toddler group with friends (which TBH is more than any bootcamp I've seen when you consider the proportions, LOL). Swimming too, great idea, but that's over for the season and I don't feel comfortable hauling a 40lb toddler in & out of the pool when I've got another baby bump.

At what age did you guys consider? 3? 5?
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:42 AM   #11
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My son is 4 and I signed him up to play baseball this year (t-ball). He is not interested at all.

He wants to take dance classes, so when ball season is over I'm going to enroll him in the local studio, if they take boys. My co-workers told me not to, because I'd "turn him gay." Seriously? He wants to try dance! Watch out for stereotypes when your child is old enough to decide for him/herself what he/she wants to do! I think it's odd that the same people who'll clamour for a girl to play football won't let their sons do anything considered to be "feminine."
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:54 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunshauna View Post
Having two teen boys, I find that their favorite sport is whatever they are playing at that moment! Sports come in seasons, so they tend to put their heart into something for the season, then move to the next one. In reality, what kids gravitate towards is based more on what their friends are doing, and whether a team is a winning or losing team......most kids would rather not play at all than to be on a losing team. Some kids have a passion for one sport, but most of the ones I see just follow the seasons with their friends. Expose him to many sports when he is young and he will let you know what he wants to do. My kids didn't have a clue that they would LOVE soccer until they actually tried it. Then suddenly they'll give up a sport they love and one arm and one leg for a girlfriend who isn't into sports. ??????? Saves a TON of $$ on snowboarding/lift tickets though.....thank you girlfriend!
LOL! That opening statement is EXACTLY what I was gonna say!
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:05 AM   #13
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We did the YMCA parent-involvement multi-sport thing when he was about 4. He didn't really click with any of the sports enough to want to continue. He tried a season of flag football, but his love is karate and he's been doing that since he was 5 (he'll be 9 this summer).
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