I mentioned last week that I was excited about Emily starting soccer. I believe very strongly that sports are healthy for kids, if they are allowed to take the lead.
Participation in sports encourages:
-Discipline. Emily has been practicing every day (her choice) so that she can better her game. And her work is paying off! She scored a goal at her first game last week.
- Teamwork. Every kid wants to be the star player, but soccer in particular is a team sport. Emily has had to learn what it means to sit out for a fraction of the game so that other kids can play. Or how to pass the ball to a teammate who has a better shot than she does. It's a great lesson in sharing!
- Making new friends. This is most important for our family right now since we are new in town. Not only does Emily have the chance to interact with kids her age, Ethan is seeing kids from preschool, and I am meeting other parents.
- Getting active. This may be a no-brainer, but we all know that our kids spend too much time in front of the TV. Time in front of the TV has been almost non-existent, and not by my doing. When kids are more active, they don't like to sit down as long anymore.
There are a lot of great things that sports encourages in kids, and it's important to keep it as a positive experience. At Emily's first practice I got to listen to the dad next to me scream at his daughter. Nothing she did was good enough (and she was easily the best out there). It has heartbreaking to see the defeated look on her face.
I try to let my kids take the lead in choosing what they want to do, but I do encourage trying new things. If they try something and they don't like it after a few times, then they can move on. But I don't want them to knock anything down without seeing for themselves. I didn't think I would like running track and cross country but I did, and I stuck with it. I was not a great runner but it kept me active and gave me something to work toward.
I am very proud of Emily for trying soccer and giving it all she has. It's pretty cool being a soccer mom!