Enrolling your child into fitness classes or sports classes is no easy choice. You have to worry about picking the right one, getting the gear, signing papers, and even the age that you should do all of that at. Today, we’re going to help you a bit by talking about at what age children can join fitness classes.
It Depends on the Sport or Subject.
The first thing that you should think about is what sport your child will be doing? Each sport has different requirements for age and mental ability. For example, children just a few months old can begin to learn how to swim. On the other hand, a true track or cross country team won’t start until your child is at least middle school age.
This age difference is mainly dependent on how a child would handle each sport. Children can do both karate and gymnastics as young as three or four. Football and soccer will start later after the children have gained an understanding of team sports and playing together. In addition to age, you should also think about the mentality and abilities of your specific child.
What is Your Child’s Mindset?
Next, think about the mental age of your specific child. If your child has an advanced understanding of playing as a team, starting tykes soccer at three or four won’t be a bad idea. On the other hand, starting rock climbing at five might not be a good idea if your child isn’t very good with heights or tough challenges.
Is It Healthy for Him or Her?
Another thought should be on the health of the sport. Long-distance running isn’t recommended as a sport until the child is older and their bones are more fully formed. Many of these recommendations will be based on joining the programs with competitive intentions. That means children can still learn the sport informally and be safe; however, rigorous training won’t be ideal until older.
For example, competitive swimming shouldn’t be taken until your child is at least four years old, according to The American Academy of Pediatrics. However, if you want to get into water safety and readiness, then children as young as six months will be fine.
Do You Have Time
Outside of physical preparedness, comes your family situation. If you don’t have a lot of time in your life, starting a sport might be something to put off. You don’t want to cause stress with a sport. Remember, meetings and competitions will take time on weekends and weekdays. In addition, the financial cost of sports can be high. There are a few things that you should ask yourself and your family before signing up.
Does the Child Want to?
While you should always encourage your child to do new things, you should also be sure your kids aren’t miserable. By making sure they are happy, you can start them out on a healthy track in life. If you force your child into a sport that they hate, they could form adversity to fitness classes and sports teams.
Think about a diverse range of activities that your child could do. Each season, try something new until they find something they love and want to stick with. A few examples include karate, rock climbing, swimming, basketball, football, soccer, track, and cross country. Just remember to talk to a doctor about what they are ready for.