TIP 22. SPORT INVOLVEMENT
Kids sports are a wonderful way that we as a parent can ensure the ongoing health and happiness of our children. I remember growing up, playing sport every weekend, training a couple of times during the week, standard life for the young males of our generation. Sport kept me fit and strong, and probably just as important, it kept me involved in something. In our nation the most popular kids sports for boys are soccer (which is often referred to as football) and for girls it is the sport of netball.
Childhood Obesity is rampant in our society, and unless we take some strategic steps forward to face the issue head on, as a society we may find ourselves outliving our children. To counteract this growing trend, governments are throwing truck loads of money at the issue, attempting to initiate a culture of sport back in our schools again. I applaud these endeavours by our government, as health issues have far reaching ramifications, especially in children.
One of the ingredients required to establish a lifestyle of sport/healthy activity is direct parental involvement in the sport/activity. On one level the school is pushing/encouraging the children to participate in sports, and the children will hopefully begin to enjoy the exercise and competition of sport, but if there is no re-enforcement at home, especially from the child's father, it is very possible that sport/healthy activity will never become a lifestyle.
Developing a lifestyle of healthy activity/sport will hold your children in good stead for many years to come and will probably affect the way your grandchildren grow up as well. For this reason it is vital that fathers show an interest in their child's sport/activity, to help re-enforce the validity of the issue in the child's mind. In a child's mind,'If it's not important to Dad, it's obviously not that important'.
In my childhood I played football for many years, every weekend out there having a go, doing my best, keeping healthy. But one thing I always knew, that when my Dad made it to the game, I was going to take it up a notch and play even better. Both sons and daughters are always seeking approval from their fathers, it's in their nature, and this is one of our greatest opportunities as fathers to help steer them in the right direction in life. If we don't give them the approval they are looking for, they will begin to seek it from peers and other adults, that may not have the child's best in mind.
Dads' Call To Action:
Talk to your children regularly about their sport/activity. Show an interest in how they/the team is going. If you have skills in the area/sport teach the child the skills in the backyard or park. Get along to the game if you can and encourage them from the sideline. Consider taking up a manager/coaching role in your child's sport for a time.
(Proverbs 22 v 6)
Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.