By: Zelda Varela (Crawford Preparatory Fourways Sports Coordinator)
Can you remember that elated feeling of being part of a team, or maybe not making the A- team and then being so determined that you put in the extra hard work to improve to be selected? Can you remember being forced to run around the field five times, doing push-ups for days at end, because you thought the PE teacher disliked children and was trying to make you suffer?
Whether you have good or bad memories related to sport or any physical activity, one thing is for sure, that physical activity promotes not only your health but instils good personal attributes required throughout life. Team sports boost self-confidence and self-esteem. Being part of a team helps children to find a sense of belonging. It teaches acceptable ways to interact with others and how to be considerate and respectful of teammates. Physical activity promotes agility and coordination. It supports healthy growth of muscles and bones, which is critical in schooling years while children are still growing and can help to reduce stress and anxiety levels, especially with the highly pressurized society that we find ourselves living in.
Through participation in sport your child will gain five different skills including research skills; social skills; thinking skills; communication skills and self-management skills.
- Social & Communication skills: it teaches acceptable ways to interact with others and how to be considerate and respectful of teammates.
- Thinking Skills: In a team sport situation, children learn to think and perform under pressure, critical basic thinking skills are promoted, which in turn can help in coping with everyday life. (http://thinkingforsuccess.com/cognition-sports.html)
- Self-management & Research skills: Be on time for practises/matches. Remember sport clothes and equipment needed for a sport. Children build self-confidence by participating and feeling good about themselves and their achievements. Physical activity helps children set goals for themselves which leads to learning how to deal with failure and success, and to have a positive attitude no matter what the outcome of an event.
Encourage your children to get active and uncover any potential opportunities and skills that young people may find useful not only in the sport sector but other sectors of their lives.