Team Sports For Your Special Needs Child

Team Sports For Your Special Needs Child

Although all kids are different, I will share with you my views on sports and​ kids with special needs.

If your child is​ having difficulties socially in​ school, you may be tempted to​ sign him or​ her up for​ basketball or​ soccer with the​ other kids.

You know your child better than anyone. Just be sure that you’re setting your child up for​ a​ positive, rather than a​ negative experience.

The things I have heard from Coaches about kids on their team would make you spit nails.
“Oh, he’s an​ awful player. He’s got some kind of​ disorder or​ something.”
“I hope he doesn’t sign up next year.”

And, the​ parents in​ the​ stands are just as​ bad.
“What is​ wrong with that kid?!”
“Put him on the​ bench.”

And, that was all heard in​ reference to​ kids in​ the​ regular 3rd – 6th grade classes. I know. it​ made me sick, too.

Now, I’m not at​ all saying that team sports should be avoided. Just make sure you know who will be coaching your child, and​ make sure that he or​ she is​ someone who you want in​ charge of​ your child’s self-esteem for​ the​ next few months.

There ARE wonderful coaches. Coaches who understand the​ impact they have upon children and​ make sure that it​ is​ positive. And, of​ course, there are special camps and​ organization with coaches trained in​ encouraging and​ training special needs kids.

However, if​ team sports are not your child’s strong suit and​ he or​ she gets very stressed or​ has that “lost” look while participating, then here are some alternatives:

Camping as​ a​ family
Going on Long Walks with You
Bike Riding (go on bike trails if​ you are concerned about safety)
Playing Tag
Going to​ the​ Park (just being a​ kid!)
Karate (again, make sure the​ people in​ charge of​ the​ facility are warm, loving, patient people, before signing on the​ dotted line)

Each of​ these activities will help strengthen your child physically and​ give him or​ her the​ benefits of​ self-confidence as​ well.

Yes, all kids need to​ be physically active, but at​ what cost? Surely not at​ the​ cost of​ feeling like they aren’t good enough. Don’t feel pressured into pushing your child into a​ team sport that may do more harm than good.

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