The eternal dilemma players and parents face: Multiple sports or one sport.
As kids grow, their involvement in sports also grows. Parents are often drawn to getting their children into sports given the physical, mental and emotional benefits attached to sports. While choosing which sport your child should participate in is one concern, the other and more pressing concern is should the child take up multiple sports or should she concentrate on just one.
While the concern is pretty common, the answer to it is not as simple. It requires an informed professional actively involved in training and coaching kids in sports to be able to tell individually for each kid.
Benefits of multiple sports
If we look at the way professional players are trained, we’ll see that there are combinations of multiple sports that the players are encouraged to undertake to develop skills. For instance an athlete might be encouraged to take up swimming to increase stamina or a gymnast might take up skiing or skateboard, which would help hone skills for the primary sport. This is especially important in case of young players who need to develop their skills and get a taste of multiple sports before they pick up their specialization.
And it is not just about skill development. Playing multiple sports breaks the monotony of a single sport and rejuvenates the player. It brings in a refreshing change and takes the boredom off practicing the same sport over and over again.
Drawback of multiple sports
Specialization is the key. If your child takes up a single sport, all the physical strength, energy and concentration is focused to a single activity. Dedicating all the time to a single sport will definitely help getting better at it. But experts argue that this may bring in boredom real soon. To avoid the monotony, kids can take up recreational activities like spending some real playtime with friends, camping, fishing or even family outings.
Another concern is financial commitment. Sports involvement comes at an expense. There is expensive gear, equipment sports articles that needs to be purchased. On top of that taking coaching, going to practice sessions and games, all of this also requires a lot of money. And by simple math, multiple sports equal to multiple expenses. There are used sports gear and equipment available that can bring in a little relief.
Which road to choose
Kids have a long way to go before they decide and get fixated on a particular sport. Playing multiple sports can develop various skills and can slowly bring in the focus to a particular sport. And when kids are ready to take up that one sport, then perhaps parents can encourage the child to specialize.