You’re preparing to be the best soccer mom or baseball dad and you need a little direction in terms of preparing your kid to play team sports. If you’ve already enrolled your son or daughter in a sports team, you’ve already taken the first step to helping them avoid child obesity. Not only that, but according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, students who play school sports are less likely to smoke, drink and do drugs. Student athletes also typically achieve better grades. Here are some things you can do this summer to get your kid prepared for the upcoming school sports seasons.
1. Keep your child active
Your kid will have a better chance of physically fitting into the sports team if you make an effort to keep him or her active through the summer. Keep your child off the video games and at the pool instead. Schedule swimming lessons or other play dates for your child. If you have room in the backyard, set up a mini practice area for the sport your kid is going to be enrolled in. Here’s a list of summer activities that could help your child stay active over the summer:
- swimming lessons
- kids play group
- take them on hikes
- enroll them in dance lessons
2. Keep your child healthy
Your child will be staying so active during the summer that they will need to be recharged with good nutrition. Especially when your son or daughter is on a team, they will be practicing regularly and will need a regular nutritious diet. Start early by setting up a structure of nutrient-rich snacks such as nuts and vegetables or pita and hummus. Also make sure that you give them enough water and instill in them the necessity for regular hydration. Get your kid a water bottle that will make hydration more fun. Here’s a list of healthy snacks for your kids:
- carrot sticks
- celery and peanut butter
- chicken kabobs
3. Get your child a sports physical
Most kids’ sports teams will require a sports physical so you could avoid trying to get in during the fall rush, and get it done in the summer. The sports physical detects conditions in kids that would put them in more risk. The doctor will be looking for heart defects and brain injuries, and it will also begin a relationship that will continue into the sports season.
Make sure to have the exam scheduled for at least four to six weeks before the first schedule practice for the team. When you show up for the physical, make sure that you have the right history forms so that you can appropriately fill out the records. You can get the physical at a hospital, private practice office, or Urgent Care center. Here’s list of medical information you’ll need for the physical:
- family cardiac history
- history of injuries and illness
- immunization records
- history of medication or supplement use
As your kid prepares for fall sports, you can also start training for being the best soccer mom or dad out there. Help your child mentally and physically prepare for the season by keeping them active and healthy and getting the tests they need to be ready.