Many parents are known as 'Soccer Mums or Dads' because they are responsible for driving their children to and back home from after-school or weekend activities. More than being 'responsible' for this chauffeur service, the parents have actually enrolled their children in organized sports intentionally.
Some parents do so because they recognise an innate talent in their child and want to polish and groom the talent. Others want to provide their children with opportunities they did not have when they were growing up. Others simply want to give their children alternative activities to participate in rather than sitting in front of a TV, etc. There may be more reasons to enroll children in organised sports activities, however, the advantages are many.
Children can pick up essential skills which are specific to a particular sport by an expert coach. For example, many children don't know the correct techniques to hold a tennis racket, or specific rules associated with the sport. A coach will skillfully guide the child on how to play correctly, and the child can use this training to their advantage throughout their life.
Each sport has certain terminology which is associated to that sport. For example, the "goal" in NRL is called a try. The scoring system of tennis requires specific terminology as well. By participating in lessons, children can pick up the correct terminology and gain the confidence that comes with knowledge.
In any sport, whether it is played in a team setting or as a single player, social skills can come in very handy. Children have their own way of socialising with one another and can learn important skills through playing sports.
The most obvious effects of participating in organised sports are the positive results for physical and mental health. Time spent on the field or court or wherever else a sport is being played/learned, is time spent away from the screen (social media, television, computer, etc.). Children remain active and alert and enjoy the outdoors.
There are many more advantages for children who have the opportunity to participate in organised sports. The small achievements will give them the confidence they need for personal development and their love for fitness will carry throughout their life. They too will in turn make efforts to impart this love to their children in the future. When going through difficult patches in life, they will have an alternative set of skills they may rely on to get over the hurdles. The list goes on and on.
The next time you feel overwhelmed being a soccer mum or dad, just think of all the benefits your children are reaping as a result of your efforts. I am a proud soccer mom indeed.