7 Tips to Make Your Children Enjoy the Sport
Francine and Patrick Seners, two associate professors, and authors of What sports for your child? Give their advice to parents who would like their child to be sporty and well in his sneakers.
1. Never force him to practice a sport he is not attracted to
The attraction for a particular discipline is a motor that you have a vested interest in exploiting if you want to get your child to love the sport. This should not prevent you from trying to evolve your tastes by discussing with him about his real motivations and possibly by making him discover a sport that is dear to you by bringing him to a match, watching an internet video with him or Doing an hour of practice in his company.
2. Make sure that he makes it neither too much, nor enough
The ideal for a “healthy” and constructive practice is to respect a certain quota of hours per week: 3 to 5 hours if it is under 9 years, 5 to 6 hours if he is between 9 and 12 years old, 7 to 10 hours if he is between 12 and 18 years old. Be careful not only hours of club classes! Hours spent cycling, swimming, rollerblading … are of course included. If there is “under-dosage,” there will be no real learning or physical development. If there is an overdose, there are real risks to the child’s health (fatigue, sleep disorders, decreased immunity, disturbance of mood …).
3. Prefer variety
Sports can be grouped into 5 main categories: performance sports (athletics, sports swimming), sports of expression (dance, gym …), duel (tennis, fencing …), team sports (football, hand, rugby …) And sport of nature (climbing, bicycle, canoe …). By practicing a sport of each category (club or association, internship, school, weekend …), a minimum of 30 hours per year, you allow your child to build a base of motor skills And so leave the doors open if he wants to approach any other physical activity or specialize with ease.
4. Do not specialize too early even if he shows promise in a discipline
When we look at the courses of the great champions, it is interesting to note that in most cases, during their childhood, they practiced for a long time several sports (and not necessarily the one that would become their specialty) before Dedicated to a single discipline. Moreover, specialization often takes place at a relatively advanced age (20 years for cyclist Jeannie Longo, 13 years for judoka Teddy Rinner, 15 years for athlete Christophe Lemaître). This is evidence that early specialization is not a necessary passage to excel in a discipline. Besides, by practicing a single sport, the child misses an opportunity to develop all his physical and mental potential.
5. Past 12 years, do not encourage the mix
Sports activities between boys and girls enable your child to learn to live with others regardless of sex. On the other hand, it is useless to make forcing after 12 years if he prefers to end up with his friends of the same sex. At this age there are anatomical, biological, sexual, but also social and cultural dimensions that make differentiation necessary.
6. Adapt activities to his age
We do not have the same respiratory and muscular potential at 6 years and 15 years. Some things to consider when choosing an activity:
– Between 3 and 7 years, the children have an angle of vision of 70 ° against 180 ° for the adult. This is to be considered in his practice of collective sport, for example, where multiple visual elements must be taken into account.
– Between 7 and 9 years, making intense efforts of more than 20 seconds duration is very difficult. It is necessary to avoid the efforts too often with a short recovery and rather to rely on the technical apprenticeships (gestures, manipulations, quality of execution). To consider for swimming or athletics for example.
– Between 9 and 12, boys become more enduring than girls.
– Between 12 and 15 years, we must favor the varied and enduring exercises and rather avoid the work in force.
– Between 15 and 18 years, it can execute intense efforts of a duration between 1 and 3 minutes.
7. Make sure that at 12 years of age, he is familiar with swimming, running and cycling
At 12, your child needs to know how to run, how to ride a bike and how to swim. The mastery of these activities will allow him to develop all the physical skills essential to his present and future balance.