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"Have You Had a Sports Discussion with Your Kids?"

Are you ready for the sports discussion with your kids? Are they ready to start some organized sports?

All you need to do is ask them!

Expose them to different types of sports to see which one they like best.

You just have to try them in a sport to see what they will like, and you never know what will happen. That is part of what I love about my kids in sports. It's fun to watch them find the sport they like and have fun playing it!

Football player with football

The key is to be patient and understanding with your kids. I have seen countless parents pushing their kids into sports they don't like. This only makes the relationship worse between the parent and child.

Although you do not want to "push" them into playing a sport if they say they do not want to play, I have had to "nudge" my boys a couple of times.

By "nudge" I only mean when I got resistance, I simply asked them to give it a try first before they made up their mind completely.

Most of the time, they found out they really liked that sport and wanted to keep playing. A couple of times they decided they had grown tired of a sport, so they did not play those sports anymore.

Open Up The Sports Discussion

My husband and I have an open relationship with our kids where they feel comfortable telling us which sports they like and don't like. I always ask them what their favorite sport is and which one they might not care to play again.

I do not want to waste their time or mine having them play in a sport that they do not like. This is counterproductive and could lead to stress in your kids at a young age.

They have their whole life to experience stress, so we do not want to add to it if we can help it. :)

It's important to be able to talk to your kids about anything not just the sports discussion, but sometimes parents can get a preconceived idea of what their kids should do or become before they are even grown.

As parents, we sometimes hope that our kids will be like us or maybe even opposite of us, but either way it is still a preconceived idea. We just have to be careful we are not forcing our own ideas onto our children when there may be something that they would rather do or become instead.

Instead of Forcing Your Opinions... Try Suggesting Instead

For example, say you hoped your boy would be a successful businessman either working for a big corporation or being their own boss of their own company one day. This is a common one, so I thought I would throw it in.

Who wouldn't like to see their son succeed financially?

What if instead your child showed an extreme interest in sports rather than business? Maybe they decided they wanted to go into the area of physical therapy for sports injuries, since it was highly unrealistic that they would be a professional athlete.

Sport related physical therapy would at least keep them close to the sports they love.

This particular job might not make the same amount of money that a business executive would make, but it would make your child happy. Isn't that what we all really want for our kids?

Happy girl with mouth open

What if you did not agree with your son's choice and kept on pushing them into getting a business degree rather than physical therapy? What do you think would happen over the course of several years of this?

Children are very impressionable and want their parents approval even if they do not agree with what they are being pushed into. To get this approval, children generally try to do what is expected of them.

If they feel they are still not getting approval, they might do the exact opposite and rebel completely. This is a natural instinct, and it is generally referred to as the "fight or flight" response.

The fight or flight response is a natural instinct of animals when they are confronted with a stressful situation. They either stay and fight or they run and hide.

Pushing your children could lead them to make a drastic decision based on stress or fear. Decisions based on these emotions are usually not the right one.

Choose A Sport with Your Kids

I like to think of playing kids sports as a starting place for your child's future. They learn about some fundamentals of life even though they do not realize they are being taught.

OK, so here is where you open yourself up to the sports discussion. Let them tell you what sports they are interested in trying.

If you do not let your child even pick the sport they like to play, what other aspects of their life might they feel they cannot choose for themselves?

Will they feel trapped, depressed, scared, unhappy, or resentful? Do you want to risk your child having those feelings?

Of course we as parents are here to discipline our kids, and I am not talking about that. Discipline is a different thing altogether.

Kids may feel some resentment toward their parents temporarily, because they simply wanted to get some candy at the store and you told them, "no, not today". That is teaching them that they can't always get want they want, and is definitely not part of the sports discussion.

It may seem like a small thing now, but every decision that you make for your child or that your child makes for themself can make a big difference in their life down the road.

Just keep your mind open when it comes to having the sports discussion with your kids, and let them express their different interests. You can always suggest different sports and encourage them in the one's they already play.

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