Friday, March 25, 2011

Kids and Sports

My husband and I love sports. We both had our fair share of athletic opportunites - I participated in volleyball, basketball, and softball while he participated in football, baseball, and basketball. Both of us ended up finding our one true love - mine was softball, his was basketball. But our parents lets us try different activities and allowed us to decide when it was time to no longer be a part of one.

I'm not really sure how young is too young to allow that choice or when we should encourage them to try. I guess you could say Caleb - my first born of three - is currently my guinea pig. Ever since we signed up up for soccer last spring, he never really seemed into it. He played two seasons, and a couple weeks ago when I said it was time to start practices again for soccer, he was less than thrilled. I told the coach we'd be sitting this season out.

He did basketball with our church's Upward program. I felt much better about this experience because he really seemed to enjoy it, and watching him was a hoot! When I've asked him since the end of the season if he liked it and if he'd want to play again, he nods his head, but doesn't give me much enthusiasm. So I'm not really sure what direction we'll go with that.

And then came another idea, courtesy of my husband. Since we're still not sure if Caleb will be sold out for team sports, we thought we'd go another direction. Josh asked Caleb if he'd like to try Taekwondo. He was elated! His face lit up, and he couldn't wait to start. He kept counting down by looking at the calendar and remembering the day his first practice would be.

That was the reaction I was hoping for when it came to something he would be a part of.

Caleb with his instructor during the first night of class. He'll receive his uniform at his next practice.

My cousin, Chris, is very athletic and loves all kinds of sports. But I remember his younger days as he worked his way through the ranks as a Karate student. He began at age seven, and he achieved all of his belts, right on through to black! He was so sweet to text me the other day:
"That is so cool! I was kind of the same way believe it or not [referring to not being interested in other sports at Caleb's age]. I didn't become legitimately interested in team sports until 5th grade. If he ends up liking it enough to go to tournaments, I'd love to help him bring home some hardware. Ha! That's when it gets really fun. You meet a ton of people and your confidence goes through the roof. It helps form great habits, respect, and drive. Can you tell I liked it? :)"
As a seven-year-old, Karate was Chris's niche for some reason.

I hope perhaps Taekwondo is Caleb's.

I love seeing little kids play team sports. My other children may love them! And perhaps Caleb will become more interested as he grows. But for now, I don't feel like I should make him do something when he's not at all interested. He's only six. If he doesn't play t-ball or soccer this year, it probably won't ruin his chances for the NCAA. :)


Christi said...

We let our babies tell us what they like too. My oldest tried Basketball for a few years...not any more. Baseball...for now. And loves piano (not a team sport but something that brings him joy).


accesskas27 said...

That's the way we do it too. Joseph said a big NO to soccer every time I have asked him, but the other 3 (basketball, football and t-ball) he is really into... I am kinda hoping that maybe taekwondo will be something my boys will do too one day... it's such a great thing!! I hope Caleb has a blast!!! :-) :-)

Amanda, Joseph, and Scottie said...

Scottie did well at soccer, but didn't just love it. He did well at fencing, but got bored with it. We are also now doing taekwondo and he loves it. His teacher says his form is superb and Scottie can't wait to go to class. He is looking forward to advancing enough that he can attend more classes and specialty classes. He is receiving his first rank advancement tonight. Exciting stuff! It is fun to find that thing that lights them up.

Jaimee said...

We went through a similar issue with T-Ball, Hannah signed up and then after a few games didn't wanna play anymore. I didn't let her quit though, I told her if she signs up for a team she needs to finish with the team. The next year when she "wanted" to sign up again I reminded her of the previous season and we decided it would be best if she didn't sign up. Just a thought.

Saucy Wench said...

I just posted a similar post about Braden. He's not much for team sports right now. That might change; it might not. For now, he swims. He loves, loves, loves it (and so do I).

JDaniel4's Mom said...

My nephew Jason never enjoyed team sports. He loved karate.

Mrs. Haid said...

How about track and field? That will be a great compromise for a kid who is self motivated but parents who love team sports and a big sporting event! (I am a former track coach though, and I actually DON'T like team sports, just individual sports. Like running. And Yoga. But you don't count those as sports, do you??)

Mrs. Haid said...

PS I need some feedback and insight sometimes, too!

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