Best advice for a child who is not good at sports but wants to be?
My oldest (almost 12 yr old boy) wants to be good at sports. I doubt this will ever happen. He's always had coordination issues, and he has no real interest in these sports other than being able to say he is good at them (seeks to be good at everything). He is however good at many other things. He is a reader, video game king, and very bright with technology. What is the best advice a mother can give without making him feel bad about his inability to do sports? I have tried focusing on his positives, and this isn't working.
Don't be the one telling him that, honestly it's not part of your job. He will grow, and if his inability for sports persists he will come to acknowledge it by himself and he will move on to other things.
For now let him try, perhaps he just hasn't find the sport who best fits him. In the end what matters is practicing, score comes last.
Just my 2 cents.
He sounds like a smart kid. I am sure you and he both know on some level that it doesn't matter if he's good at sports. The idea of being good at sports is subjective; what is the definition of being good at something?
In your son's case, does it mean making it on to the school sports team of his choice? Remember, he could make it on to the team if he wanted. But you noted that he doesn't have any real interest in sports outside of the chance to say he's good at them. I am sure he seeks to be good at everything. I bet he's a really inquisitive, capable young guy.
Let him feel these feelings. It is normal at age 12 to feel lots of angst and wanting. It's part of him working out his place in the world. And if you're advice isn't working on him, that only reinforces my view. He's going through the developmental stage of rebellion, at a healthy age to be going through it.
He'll do great!!
Can you clarify the question? Is it his desire just to say he's good at sports or a desire to actually BE good at sports? I think that makes a difference. If he has no real interest in sports it seems as if it's coming to grips with what we all have to come to grips with. I actually wrote an allegory about this. It seems like a children's story, but it's for all of us. It's called Polly and the Measuring Stick. Polly is a little petunia who lives in a wonderful garden. She plays tag with all her flower friends and is completely happy until the Garden Club comes to visit. "There were 'ooh's' for this flower and 'ahh's' for that flower, but no 'ooh's or 'ahh's' for her." Polly then desends down a path, measuring herself with each flower in the garden. "She forgot that delphiniums" were MADE to be tall..." She becomes so obsessed with the measuring that she's is literally "down" to the ground until she discovers that she must "measure just ME" to see how I grow." (That kind of thing there.) (It's on Kindle -tee hee)
SO, it depends on the REASON your little high achiever wants to be good at sports). If you clarify that, we'll have a better handle on an answer (as if any of us have answers on parent
I think it is wanting to be like other ppl. Cute story, and I believe that is his situation. The kid is smart, does coding for computers already, but doesn't want to be seen as "the smart kid" rather be seen as the athletic or popular kid.
My hubby has been coding 4 over 40 yrs. He said, if a kid becomes a wizard in the STATISTICS of sports, batting averages etc., he can become very popular with the sports minded guys w/o having to be good at it. more ideas but need urcomment for space
That is actually a good idea. He is a data minded child. He likes statistics, numbers, things that make things make sense for his brain.
Do u watch "The Big Bang Theory" together? My Mike is a bit of a Sheldon.That show has made "smart" the new "popular" + help communica. Also "Scorpion"!Old movie "Real Genius" GREAT! Sports like track, swimming etc. Mike did guys' gymnastics in HS.
We do watch BBT and the new show Scorpion about high IQ people. He has Apergers, so his brain works diff but he just hasn't figured out he can still be cool AND smart. Swimming is a good idea also. I struggle to understand him sometimes.
Ultimately you need to instill in him the greatest character advice you could ever transfer to anyone. It is ok to fail; yet, get up and persevere with the tenacity of a Spartan. Try, try, try again until you have accomplished it. Then if it continues to excite you (partaking in it) continue with it! If it does not, move on. Do not move on until mastery has been obtained.
If we instill in our children that if they don't become successful at something, try something else. They may never become an expert at anything... In the wonderful book by Malcolm Gladwell titled Outliers he proposes it will take 10,000 hours to become highly proficient at something. That is a "pretty good" standard or rule for commitment.
One of our greatest challenges for our youth is everything wrong with obesity in children. We do not want to use the term laziness as it becomes a label. So we must approach physical participation in "sport" carefully yet firmly. Here is the rub. An eleven year old, as with many more mature folk, will not exercise for the sake of exercise. Running in circles for 30 minutes is boring and linear in many ways. Interactive activities are far more holistic and healthy for both biomechanical reasons and engagement. The benefits of hand eye coordination stimulation and developing our reaction times and balance, are far more profound on mental acuity then we can imagine. Our brains work in balance and universally not in isolation of thought verses action. Coordination issues are not something to just accept, just like some have trouble with math, we do not quit we get extra help, Coordination is a reflection of motor skills health. So let us put it this way. Non-participation is only an option for those who want the eleven year old to arrest his development. It is not a choice or pleasure or "want" deal. It is as essential as reading or math or nutrition or sleep. Yes that sounds brutal and not what you want to hear. Eleven years old is not the time to let a child pick and/or choose what healthy activities she likes and only do those.
Here are the basic three cool options all with real plus sides. Don't make him do the sports with others. You - adapt your busy schedule and you do it with him. Get coaching, a coach concept is one on one time and group time, while this helps with the "sport" it is awesome for self esteem. Create exercises that he can do by himself where he is structured to compete against himself and lay down the law -- he will practice so much per day. Again this teaches so much more than the sport itself.
Sorry but teachers, coaches and parents don't get off the hook with simply giving "advice".
Perhaps I am being rude here. I apologize. Perhaps I am too passionate. But it is a child's health and life we are talking about here. I have never heard of a child depression or heart attack because they were forced into physical exercise -- but failure to get it, may cause both.
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