Each parent should care about understanding what the answer to this question is, but, unfortunately, it is not that simple. Well, it is not simple for professionals, how could it be for parents who have little experience in physical activity? But, let’s start from the beginning…
To answer this question, it is necessary to understand that we have to consider three points of view:
- What parents prefers
- What the child prefers
- What would be useful for the kid
The most common error is choosing one of these points of view instead of mediating between the three. Let’s analyse one by one.
What parents prefer
According to this first point option, the best physical activity is the one the parent would have done or has done himself. Otherwise, the choice is influenced by the typical clichés: swimming is the most complete sport, dance is the best for a little girl, martial arts are good for discipline the child… well, these are all partial truth.
What the child prefers
In this case, the physical activity is chosen on the basis of what the child thinks but, it often means following what their friend has chosen or what is trendy among own’s group.
What would be useful for the kid
Usually, it is the last choice but, in reality, it is the most important.
Answering the question at the beginning of this article is not simple. Sport activity is the best compromise between the three points of view, but now let’s try to answer without taking into consideration the first two points and without thinking about hours, availability and distance… what comes out is exclusively a technical response.
What characteristic should have a correct physical activity for kids
The best sport activity for the development of the child must have some fundamental characteristics:
- Development of the major number of motor schemes: it means that a cyclic sport (as cycling) must be combined with a situation sport (as tennis or karate). This is fundamental to guarantee the development of abilities as balance, reaction skill, motor control… one single sport usually can’t treat all these aspects.
- Balanced development of every muscle district: the body of a child in full development is particularly sensitive to external stimuli and this means that if your son plays football and if the society in which he practises it is not careful about youth physiology, probably he will develop very much the musculature of the lower limbs while that of the upper limbs will be developed less. For this reason, it is important to choose a complementary sport or a qualified society with competent technicians.
- Strength, resistance and speed development: each of these skills is important because it promotes the improvement of specific aspects. Strength reinforces bones, articulations and muscle contraction. Resistance increases lung capacity and the cardio-vascular system, including heart. Speed determines the completion of the kid’s motor baggage.
- Mobility development: a more elastic and flexible body definitely is symptom of health and childhood is the best moment to develop this ability.
- Moments for confrontation and personal growth: sport teaches how to live thanks to the management of difficult situations alternated with funny moments, but also to the sharing of fatigue, results and achieved goals. For this reason, sport must make the heart beat fast and make the kids live real emotions. A physical activity that never goes out the comfort zone can’t be the best choice.
- Respect for the rules and creation of a dynamic and correct lifestyle: learning sport rules and conduct rules contributes to the creation of a correct and open mentality. Learning how to manage rest moments, nutrition, training hours… all these aspects will be important in adult age.
- Training mind and body: learning how to listen sensations as fatigue, energy, muscles and how to take care of the body to live better; learning sport values and the management of difficulties, boredom and tiredness… the kid has to understand the indispensable relation between mind and body through the experimentation.
Dear parents, if you want to act for your children’ sake, follow the four points below:
- Don’t make your child specialize in a unique discipline too early. The best solution is combining complementary activities.
- Make sure that your child trains himself three times a week for 11 months per year.
- Promotes an active and dynamic lifestyle besides sport.
- Remember that, in parallel to the sport choice, you should verify the competence of your child’s trainer because too often parents believe to solve the problem only by choosing the activity.
Contact specialists in the sector always. There is not the best sport, but there are many ideal and funny combinations that could be the perfect solution for you. Fitness programs for kids and young people, if well organised, can complement in the best way your child’s preferred sport.
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