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Elementary School Kids and sports.

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MichelleCarmen

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Okay, I have two boys (6 & 8). . .(many of you probably already know this!)

My younger one ONLY wants to take Karate, which he''s being signed up for, and my older one doesn''t want to do anything.

Last summer and during the winter they took swimming lessons. They LOVED them when in class, but my older son is already complaining that he doesn''t want to take them anymore. I''m insisting and will force them to take the classes until they can successfully dive from the diving board. They simply have to know how to swim for safety reasons! Neither have a fear of water. . .no psychological issues.

As said above, my older son doesn''t want to participate in any sport! All of his friends are active, so my son could join a team and be with friends, however even with that, he still doesn''t want to try any out.

What are thoughts on this?

Does one say, "okay, I won''t force you." OR "you should at least try a few out because you may end up liking one of them?"
 

neatfreak

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Feb 17, 2007
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14,167
I think you should encourage him to find one he might like and try it, but don''t force him or he''ll hate it just because you forced him KWIM?

Are there OTHER things he might rather do? Music lessons? Art class? Boy scouts?
 

Bia

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I''m sort of torn. On the one hand I say forcing (in a nice way) them to join might help them find something they really like. For example my FI had a fear of joining ''teams.'' He wanted nothing to do with any sport because he had a traumatic experience trying out for little league. Let''s just say he didn''t throw the ball very far and the other kids (and parents!
) laughed so hard that he literally ran away crying (my poor baby!) After that he wanted nothing to do with team sports. His mom thought karate might be a better environment since he was a hyper little monkey jumping off the ceiling. So she literally dragged him to a karate lesson. He ended up loving it and went on to become a black belt in Karate and Taekwondo.

On the other hand, it can backfire and make a kid hate the activity even more. Then you end up wasting a lot of time and money.

I say give your sons a few options. Tell him they have to do one activity, whether its a team sport, martial art, cub scouts, whatever, and let them choose. If they don''t like it, tell him they have to stick it out until they finish and then they can try something else next year. As long as they''re doing something they like.
 

fleur-de-lis

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Date: 3/12/2009 3:55:41 PM
Author: Bia

I say give your sons a few options. Tell him they have to do one activity, whether its a team sport, martial art, cub scouts, whatever, and let them choose. If they don't like it, tell him they have to stick it out until they finish and then they can try something else next year. As long as they're doing something they like.

+1. Bia's a very wise woman-- her suggestion sounds like a nice blend of parental guidance and individual choice. (It sounds like how 'Supernanny' would handle it!)
 

Bia

Ideal_Rock
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Date: 3/12/2009 4:00:07 PM
Author: fleur-de-lis


Date: 3/12/2009 3:55:41 PM
Author: Bia

I say give your sons a few options. Tell him they have to do one activity, whether its a team sport, martial art, cub scouts, whatever, and let them choose. If they don't like it, tell him they have to stick it out until they finish and then they can try something else next year. As long as they're doing something they like.

+1. Bia's a very wise woman-- her suggestion sounds like a nice blend of parental guidance and individual choice. (It sounds like how 'Supernanny' would handle it!)
Hey, thanks!


Don't have kids of my own yet, but I was a nanny all through college. Negotiated more with those kids as their nanny than I will probably ever do with adults in my career.

ETA: she's a smart one, that SuperNanny. I always feel for her when she encounters those kids that act like the devil's spawn. eek!
 

elrohwen

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I was the same at that age and my parents forced me (ok, they bribed me) to try one new sport every year. I tried them all and hated them, so they let me quit. I did stick with horse back riding, but they would have preferred a cheaper sport
Oh, and they did force me to take swimming lessons for years (I am totally forcing my kids to do this too!)

So I think you should make him join a sport, but offer him some new toy or something he really wants as a trade. If he doesn't like the sport, oh well, he can try something new next year


ETA: Like Bia said, absolutely let him choose his activity. It doesn't have to be baseball, soccer, or something similar.
 
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