As a parent, it can be rough to watch our kids struggle with something – especially something as beloved as sports. So why bother with a team sport at all? Because even when a team sport is challenging, there are many developmental benefits that make even the hardest season, worthwhile. From emotional, to physical, to educational lessons, playing a team sport goes way beyond strengthening hand eye coordination.
Learning How to Lose Graciously
Let’s be honest, how many times in life do we as adults have to “lose” with grace? As frustrating as it can be, it’s a life skill we all need. Allowing our kids the space to practice losing – without being a jerk – is essential. When an 8 year old has a melt down over a lost game, it is acceptable because they are still learning how to process emotions. If a 40 year old does the same thing, it’s pretty ugly. Team sports provide our kids with a space to learn a skill, practice it, and recover from a misstep in an appropriate place.
Teamwork and Character
While the old adage “there’s no I in team” is well, old, it still rings true. When our kids are given the space to learn how to operate successfully outside of their parent’s oversight, they are able to make choices that are true to their personal character. In addition, learning how to work as a team and be a positive teammate is a life skill that they will need for the rest of their lives.
Discipline and Leadership
We all know how tough it can be to stick with something, especially when that thing doesn’t come easy to us. Team sports are meant to challenge players to promote growth in development. That includes physical development like hand eye coordination, but also growth in the discipline of continuing to practice a skill or give good effort in practice, even when they don’t feel like putting in the effort. In addition, great leaders are often former athletes because they have had time to develop the skill of leading their peers. Whether it’s in an official capacity like the Team Captain, or in an unofficial way like the player who is always the first to start the team cheer.
So often it can feel like your child needs to pick a sport and start early, because by the time they are in middle school, some kids have been playing a sport for years. At AYB, we have built our leagues to accommodate both skilled players, and those that are just beginning to learn and love basketball. Our Rec League makes it possible for our players to enjoy a new sport, without having to give up their other commitments too. While our Club League lets our more experienced players compete and continue to hone their skills. Click over to our website to learn more.