Making mistakes isn’t the end of the world. It’s a hard lesson to learn, and I definitely have trouble remembering it myself as an adult. However, playing sports like soccer is a great way to learn about making mistakes, losing, and moving forward.
Mistakes don’t stop play
Playing a sport like soccer, for instance, there are hundreds of little decisions going on through a game. Pass to this teammate or that? Should I shoot now? Obviously not all of these decisions will be the right ones. By playing through it, kids learn that there’s no time to stand in the middle of the pitch and bemoan that missed shot, but to keep going and learn from it. Not only keep going, in fact, but to stay confident.
Experienced coaches are key
Experienced coaches are key to helping kids develop their resilience. For the kids who have been always been fast runners and good at kicking balls, suddenly coming up against other kids who are also fast runners and good at kicking balls can be a bit of a shock. A good coach helps them keep their confidence intact, and learn from their teammates who might be better at footwork or scoring goals. Good, experienced coaches will also help kids learn how to be good losers. Particularly in that 5-7 year old period where every game seems to involve rules that change when they’re losing!
Resilience helps with everything
Resilience learned through team sports is easy to apply to school and friendships. Not doing as well as they thought on a test, coping with a new class or new friends, working with changing situations – it all require personal resilience. Sport is a safe and structured way to work through these challenges, with a clear way to progress forward.
If your child isn’t taking part in any team sports, try a summer camp to start out.
This post is sponsored by Volf Soccer Academy. At Volf Soccer Academy, we believe having fun, making friends and getting active are the most important. Coming to practice with a smile is the best way to start your journey to become a successful soccer player. Our main focus is practicing technical soccer skills including fakes, feints and spins which are challenging, fun and highly effective in the game setting.
Erin McGann is the former Managing Editor for Vancouver Mom and Toronto Mom Now. She drinks just a bit too much coffee, is a bit obsessed about sourcing local food, plays the cello moderately well, spends too much time on Twitter, keeps honeybees on a rooftop, and has a thing for single-malt whisky. Erin is working on a novel set in turn-of-the-century Vancouver, which her husband, son and dog have to hear about all the time, and also blogs at Erin at Large.