Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Pushing Sports

After weeks of nonchalantly begging my daughter on if she would reconsider her no response to doing softball this summer, I finally have gave in but I'm definitely not happy about it. She has played T-ball and then Machine pitch this last summer and now she's ready to close that chapter. I am so sad but I know it's not healthy to be pushing your kids into things they don't want to do.

I however am not going to let her go through summer without some sort of activity. I told her she had to do something and gave her choice of Gymnastics, Dance, Cheerleading, Tae Kwon Do, or if those didn't appeal to her still......ball. She chose Cheerleading. Umm......cheerleading is sooooo not Alex. She has done 4-5 cheer clinics at the highschool the past years but she is quiet, not real enthusiastic, which is not cheerleading material. She is a shy mouse when it comes to big crowds. But I went ahead and said ok so I'll be enrolling her soon and she'll start mid May. Dominic will be doing ball again although he is saying no, I don't think he understands what he is saying no to.

I hate feeling like I'm pushing them into doing things especially if they say no but I really think it's good for them to do these things. I know as a kid, I did nothing. My parents had me in Brownies and Piano, no sports except 6th and 7th grade I played Basketball. It's come to a point that Dominic because of his ADHD, we realize he'll play but he'll never be completely centered on what he's doing. Like now he's playing soccer (games are 30 minutes but by 20 minutes he's done. It's sad because you want your boys to LOVE sports but because he is easily frustrated and gives up it's hard to find him a match of something he loves. We realize that Damien will probably be our first boy who really sticks at doing sports because Dominic just has such a hard time. Just hopefully by that time Damien will talk. lol

So what do you do with your own kids? How do you find that talent that they love and are willing to keep at it? Do you feel you have to push? Does it make you feel guilty? I know Alex would be happy probably going back into gymnastics since we've done that since she was 4 but she really wants to go for cheerleading which even though I was hoping to see her and her classmates playing ball again, I can respect that...... I guess.


Rhonda said...

I played t-ball when I was a kid. I only played if I wanted to. I did track for 1 year. My parents never pushed, never made us be in anything, unless we wanted to be. I have taken that same attitude with the kids. Zaphillia right now is really into ballet. She knows that if she starts not having fun, then she can quit at the end of the session we have paid for. It runs in 10 week sessions September through June. I ask her each time I get the bill if she is still going to dance. Zachary is in a tot sport program. He loves it, but if he decides that he does not want to go, I will let him quit.

I don't think that they have to be involved in an organized activity as long as they are active. I actually prefer that they are not in anything once school is out so that we can do our summer fun stuff without having to be anywhere at any certian time. We are always out and about doing something. As they get older, if they want to do something in the summer, then they can, but I am not going to push it!

utmomof5 said...

I think there is a fine line between pushing them and becoming the crazy mom on the sidelines. I think it is good to make them do lots of different things so they can find something they love (even if it is cheerleading). My parents paushed a little to hard sometimes but in the long run it did me good!!

hollibobolli said...

These days cheerleading is a sport - and without proper supervision it can be a dangerous one. But it's no different from any other sport. My sister ended up with a full scholarship to the university of her choice from cheerleading and she loved it for the first year. If your daughter is shy, maybe the appeal is that cheerleading can be a really great way to meet people and make friends.. I do know that (in my school) the cheerleaders and pom pon girls had tight bonds just like any other team.

I used to teach English and I watched parents push children beyond what they wanted to do, to the point some of them sabotaged their grades to get kicked off teams. I hope with my daughter that I will be able to discover what she enjoys doing and support her to the best of my ability. I won't know until we get there.

If she doesn't want to do anything other than study - I won't push it. I enjoyed the educational aspects of school - and I found things to do with friends at home, like riding horses, swimming or just hanging out.. I also got a part time job to buy my first car. My parents didn't push us either way.. One of us really went all the way with organized athletics and one of us didn't. I ended up being a little more prepared for college and having a career.

I'm sure you'll figure it out - every child is different.. every school is different - figure it out as you go along.


Kbreints said...

I wish that my parents had done more "pushing" with us kids... I think that you have to have a balance, however no puching is not good!

Jen P said...

Paul and I talk about this all the time. I had a VERY pushy dad. We had to play a sport and he HAD to coach. It was fun for a while, but my sister and I were ready to quit by the time we got to high school, but continuted to play. Paul was not pushed at all to play anything and he wishes he was encouraged more so he could of had some of the team stuff in school.

I just hope we can find the right balance. Jamison will be in a short dance class (30 mins) in May. I really hope she enjoys it. Secretly I hope she plays piano and can carry a tune like daddy!

Sabrina said...

It's great to see the wide views on this subject. I really wish my parents would have pushed me a bit to atleast TRY new things. Not just piano, piano, piano. lol

Like I suspected after her being in softball for 2 years, the rec commission SOMEHOW got my cell phone number called and left me a VM last night. We canceled our home phone just a few months ago so I suspect they called some mommy friends asking if anyone knew how to catch me. I called back Aaron and told him I had asked over and over before the sign up deadline but she couldn't give me a straight answer so because of that I didn't sign her up. He said they really wanted her to join if she would so I told her that and just the thought of being needed was enough for her to smile and say yes. lol! I told him I was a bit concerned about the games in these tiny towns and having to drive by myself with 4 kids all over but they are keeping the girls playing close to home this year with 1 neighboring town. YAY!

So anyways I'm excited she'll be doing it again. Now it's time to get rid of this rain and drag out all the ball equipment and get to practicing. The kids love when mommy and daddy join in practicing here at home.