6 Fab Reasons Why Kids Should Get into Sport This September
The end of the summer doesn’t mean we need to retreat indoors until Spring, especially as it is usually a mild and pleasant month. Sunny September is an ideal time for everyone to hop, skip and jump right into sport.
Especially for kids, here are eight great reasons why:
1. Sports are ice breakers & confidence boosters for back-to-school nerves
The arrival of September brings with it the often nerve-racking experience of the first day back at school – an experience even more scary for first-time school joiners. What better way to get children interacting and enjoying each others’ company than participating a team sport or group sporting activity? All schools run compulsory physical education lessons, but it’s also a good idea to encourage children into extra-curricular sporting activities to boost physical activity and social interaction. There's a sport for all abilities and interests from dancing, swimming and gymnastics and of course the ever-popular football and rugby plus more niche activities such as fencing. One of our boys (year 3) has joined after-school gym and dance classes this September and two sons have signed for new football teams and new swimming lessons to help improve their skills further and water confidence.
The healthy competition encouraged in team sports activities is a great way to build self esteem in children. Doing well and building up skill levels is rewarding, and learning what it feels like to fail and be able to bounce back is reassuring. When you then build in the opportunities sports provides for making new friends we mentioned earlier, you’ve got one powerful mix of social and personal benefits.
Two happy children!
2. Be inspired by the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games 7-18th September
The Olympics may be over, but the Paralympics will soon be upon us and the sporty inspirational influence will start all over again. You’d be surprised just how quickly the sporting fever can spread, watching the athletes compete. You may just find that your little ones develop a new interest very soon. Those after-school football practices or swimming competitions could turn into a long-term passion or even a professional career. Get them to stay tuned to the Paralympic Games for all the action.
Image from the London Paralympic Games
3. The brain is in learning mode and open to new things
Being back in September's back-to-school-mode will mean your kids’ brains will revert back to learning mode very quickly, so they’ll become more receptive and open to learning new skills. With this in mind, September is the perfect time to encourage participation in sports and really take advantage of this renewed willingness to learn. Whether it’s the point system in tennis or how to dribble a basket ball, they’ll take it in faster than you might expect!
Bright as a button!
4. It’s an excuse to get active again after a summer lull
Children run around and play all year round, but the summer holidays can bring a slight lull in activity levels and often a break in routine. Getting stuck into a new sport will not only provide a way to boost activity and fitness levels in the short term, but also encourage a permanent, healthy hobby for them to pursue and maintain in the long term. We have children that don't stop moving but they tend to stick to the same sports (swimming, football) so we find September inspires them to try new things.
5. Top up your child's life skills
Sports are hugely beneficial. As well as physical benefits, they teach every-day life skills such as the importance of teamwork, making commitments, how to follow rules, how to cope with failure, how to set goals, how and when to take risks, how to control and channel emotions and much more.
6. Sports can improve academic performance
Studies show that just fifteen minutes of exercise can improve memory function and the ability to think clearly, making learning a doddle. Given the fact that September brings the start of a new school term, it’s a no-brainer (pardon the pun) to encourage regular participation in sporting activities to give kids that valuable cognitive boost for their studies. Does your child have boundless energy? Consider gymnastics.
And, above all else, sport is fun! So let’s get the kids embracing a September of sport this year and see where it takes them, or where they take it.
This girl is mega!