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25 July 2018

Why Playing Sports is So Important For Your Children

Published by Darrell Long
Renovation-and-refit-projects

Sport is a powerful tool for children in a multitude of different ways. It has a positive impact on their physical and mental wellbeing, breaks down barriers in schools, brings people together, and allows them to express themselves, have fun and achieve great things. Sport is an invaluable platform that can complement their traditional education and empower them to learn, develop and grow in the right way. There are so many different sports to pursue too. There truly is something for everyone!

How Does AIS Approach Sports in School?

The Australian International School in Singapore provides children with the opportunity to play for 100 competitive teams in a range of sports. Children can learn to swim from just two years of age with our Austswim certified instructors and as they progress through Elementary and Secondary school they will have the opportunity to take part in a variety of different sports, at recreational or competitive level. Children who show a particular aptitude and passion for competitive sport are able to take part in the school's elite Athlete Development Program, where they will have access to expert coaches, training facilities and nutritional advice. At AIS, sport is a force for good at all levels, for both girls and boys, and everyone has the capacity to be successful.

What are the major benefits?

Fair play

Sports will help your child to develop positive character traits from a very early age. Whether your child is playing cricket, soccer or rugby, they will learn the rules of fair play and working together as a team, which will shape their moral principles. Children who actively engage in sports can also inspire friends and other people to take up different games.

Friendships

Sport is particularly useful at integrating a child into school life and making them feel a part of something bigger. This is because sport allows them to create lasting friendships that may otherwise not have been possible. A school environment centered around positive, healthy student participation in sport can also reduce instances of bullying.

Growth

Sport can help a child grow in a number of ways, not only physically but as a person. They will have to talk and engage with a range of different people, from teachers and coaches to teammates and opposing players. There will be times when they have to deal with more difficult situations, such as losing a vital match, and these experiences will give them a new perspective on things and a deeper understanding of their own and other people’s emotions. Learning from success and failure will also give them motivation to improve.

Learning environment

Active kids do better in school. Various studies suggest there is a positive correlation between a child who plays sport and their academic performance. While it is no guarantee, sport generally serves as an excellent learning environment for children.

“Children learn by participating in sports, learning rules, and learning to act appropriately in a social environment,” VU University senior researcher, Amika Singh says.

She adds: “And that translates into the classroom, where children who are physically active may adhere better to classroom rules and get along better with teachers and classmates. So academic performance may just be the short term benefit of exercise; there are a whole range of social and behavioral benefits that go beyond grades as well.”

Reduce stress

There has been a spike in anxiety and stress among adolescents in recent years and sport is a great reliever of these issues. Sports experiences not only build a child's self-esteem but can help them to channel their emotions and energies in an effective way. This is very important for children of all ages and can be a key combatant against aggressive outbursts, conflict and juvenile delinquency. Sport keeps the body healthy and the mind strong and clear.

What can I do as a parent?

Parents can aid the development of their children through sport by encouraging them to participate and being positive about their performance. It is important not to set out unrealistic expectations or to push them hard to achieve certain goals from an early age as this can work against the many benefits sports provides. During preschool, focus your efforts on introducing them to sport so they can get used to it and start enjoying it as a part of their everyday lives.

International schools in Singapore will give your child the opportunity to experience a variety of outdoor pursuits. Australia has a rich tradition in sport and your child will have the opportunity to become the very best they can be.

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