How Much Water Do You Need Daily?
We’ve all heard that drinking 8 cups of water a day is the right amount for us, but is that really true? Let’s check how much water do you need daily!
I know I drink water like a horse, and I drink 3 to 5 cups with my midday meal alone. If I were to drink just eight glasses of water per day, I’d probably shrivel up and die from thirst. So how much water do I really need? How much you do you need?
Hydration is also important in order to cut cellulite on your stomach!
Your Body Knows Best
When it comes to drinking water, listen to your body. It will tell you, “Hey pal, how about some hydration? I’m getting a bit parched over here!”
Your mouth will get a bit dry, and you’ll find that your head feels full of wool when you need to drink water bad. When it reaches this level, it means that you’re in serious need of hydration. In fact, if you notice that your mouth is very dry, your body is probably already suffering from a lack of water.
Your thirst is only noticeable when the concentration of your blood increases by about 2%, and dehydration only starts at about 5%.
Very few of us notice that our mouths are leathery and dry throughout the day, as we are fairly busy people. When we do notice, we usually take steps to drink more water, and we feel great that we’re solving our thirst problem.
However, drinking more water than we’re accustomed to can actually be good for our health!
You’ve probably heard that drinking water can help to make weight loss easier, and studies in 2003, 2007, and 2008 proved that increasing water intake can help your body burn more calories, reduce the amount of food you eat, and speed up your metabolism.
Water can help you to lose weight, but the primary way that it does so is by filling your stomach and stopping you from eating and drinking things that will increase your body’s calorie count.
Check here what is fat flush water and what does it do
So How Much is Enough?
The Institute of Medicine has determined how much water the average man or woman needs to drink to be healthy:
Men — The average man should drink 3.7 liters or 15 cups of water per day.
Women — The average woman should drink 2.7 liters or 11 cups of water per day.
That’s a lot more than the 8 cups that you’re used to drinking! The good news is that you don’t need to get all of your water just by drinking!
The recommendations above is for total water intake, which means liquid in all of its forms. The water can come from fruits, vegetables, coffee, tea, and, yes, even beer! (I know what I’m going to do to increase my liquid intake this weekend!)
Lifehack: Make drinking water every hour on the hour a habit. If you drink one cup every hour, you’ll get more than your 8 glasses per day. Once you get used to drinking one glass every hour, it will be easy to drink 2 or 3 glasses per hour. You’ll have to pee a lot more, but it will help regulate your body!
You might also like: Bottled Water VS Tap Water: Is The Extra Money Really Worth It?
A Word for the Wise: Cut Out Flavored Drinks
Did you know that drinking lots of water is one of the natural remedies against cellulite?
Drinking more water is just the smart thing to do, but many people opt to drink other liquids in order to increase their total water intake throughout the day.
While drinking soda, coffee, tea, beer, and other drinks will help you to get more liquids in your body, you’re doing two things wrong:
- Adding Calories — All of the drinks above have calories, which means that you’re adding extra calories to your diet and giving yourself more energy to burn to avoid gaining weight.
- Adding the Wrong Nutrients — Coffee and tea both contain healthy nutrients, but they usually are accompanied by sugar and milk. Beer and soda both have lots of sugar and calories, so they’ll just go straight to your gut.
The truth is that water is the best thing for you to drink if you want to get more liquid and hydrate yourself properly!
It’s a calorie-free beverage, so you won’t have to worry about increasing the amount of food you eat every day. There’s nothing harmful in clean drinking water, so toxins and chemicals aren’t a concern with water.
Find the fruits and vegetables that are rich in water and low in calories, and stay hydrated the tasty, low fat way. Watermelons and strawberries are both 92% water, and you can get about 115 grams of water from an apple or a red tomato. Get enough water and keep that calorie consumption low by eating these healthy fruits and veggies!
Add more water to your diet, and don’t be content with just the 11 to 15 cup minimum. It will do your body a whole lot of good to get more water, so bottom’s up!
Here’s an interesting infographic I have found at skinnyms.com
Slumber Party Planning Tips
As much as you want to give your child a fun slumber party, let’s face it — inviting a bunch of kids into your home (not just to hang out for a few hours, but also to sleep overnight) can be daunting. You have to think about sleeping arrangements, food, activities and more. How can you minimize stress? What are some good tips for slumber party planning? To help answer these questions, here are some key ideas to keep in mind:
- Determine the guest list. Decide ahead of time how many kids you can logistically fit in your home, and ask your child who he or she wants to invite accordingly. If you already know your home can’t accommodate 12 kids, it’s best to say so upfront and minimize the guest list to the number you can handle. Likewise, if kids will need to sleep in more than one location, draw names about who sleeps where in order to avoid hurt feelings.
- Plan a simple, fun menu. Typically at a slumber party, you can expect to provide the evening’s dinner, a variety of snacks, and the next morning’s breakfast. Save yourself some stress by keeping the food simple: Find out if any kids have allergies ahead of time, and then create a kid-friendly menu. Dinner could be pizza or takeout. Snacks could be items that are easy to pick up at the store like chips, crackers, fruit, candy, desserts and so on. Then, in the morning, you can provide store-bought muffins, a prepped breakfast casserole you can pop in the oven, fruit, donuts, juice and milk.
- Stick to disposables. Especially if you’re planning a slumber party for lots of children, skip washing dishes and go with disposable plates and utensils. This will make cleanup easier and simplify meal times.
- Plan a few fun activities. There are lots of ways to keep kids entertained at a slumber party. You might ask your child to pick a movie or two that everyone can watch, or you could get everyone involved in meal prep by having them top their own pizzas or put together simple sandwiches. Set out board games and card games. Provide a stack of mad libs. Another idea is to have the kids take on some sort of DIY project like using fabric markers on T-shirts or making their own jewelry.
- Make nighttime less scary. For those kids who are afraid of the dark but embarrassed to say so, leaving a nightlight or hallway light on can be a real comfort. Likewise, you can make the party more fun and add illumination by ordering glow sticks or other glow-in-the-dark products that you hand out to participants.
- Communicate expectations. Be in touch with parents about your expectations — what time to drop off kids, what time to pick them up, what kids need to bring to the party, etc. The better you communicate, the less chance for misunderstandings. Likewise, make sure all the parents have your phone number and you have theirs in case something comes up and you need to reach them.
- Get backup. If you’re at all unsure about being able to handle the party alone, enlist backup by way of a spouse, friend or other parent. Having other adults on hand to manage logistics, answer questions, comfort kids, etc., will help ensure everything goes smoothly.
The good news, when it comes to a slumber party, is that you don’t have to be overwhelmed by the prospect. With ample preparation you can minimize stress and everyone can enjoy a safe, fun experience!
Author bio: Jeremy Thompson is a born entrepreneur and Partner at Premier Glow. His many businesses include a DJ company, selling bubble gum and novelty toys.
12 Amazing Reasons Why Dogs Are Good to Help Raise Children
It takes a village to raise a kid. That’s an old saying that holds true to this day. The extended family setup may have evolved and changed to mean day care, pre-school, and a baby sitter but the concept is unchanged. Another reliable “village member” that will help you care for your kid and keep him company is your dog.
Yes, it’s true; dogs have a soft spot for babies, and vice versa. Together, they make a household more fun, a little more chaotic, but certainly with more love to go around. Growing up with dogs will teach your kids a lot, including to be more generous with their time, space, food, and affection. They will know that they are not the center of their parents’ universes, and that there will be times that your child and your dog will have to rely on one another for companionship. They will grow up as inseparable buddies.
Dogs have incredible maternal instincts. They will protect the child as fiercely as they would their own pups. There have been many videos on YouTube and Facebook where dogs have saved the lives of their owners or their children. These are real-life stories, and we know that there are thousands more that have not been captured on film.
Our infographic illustrates how friendships between man and dog start at the tender years. Read on and prepare to shed a tear or two. There’s plenty of love to go around inside your home.
Tips For Cleaning Hockey Equipment
Parents have a hard enough time with all the other tasks they have in their lives. When a child participates in sports, it opens up a whole new set of responsibilities on both ends. One of those responsibilities comes in the form of laundry.
A lot of effort is put into the game of hockey. With that effort comes an increase in laundry and, in result, an increase in smell.
Taking care of your youth hockey player starts with taking care of their gear. It is important to wash gear so that you decrease the risk of infection. Gloves, in particular, should be washed every few days but drying the gear is simpler than you might think. Simply hang gear on a clothesline. Old fashioned, right?
Removing the soles of skates is another trick to proper drying and decreases the chance of infection. Compression products are recommended for bacteria prevention since they help soak up moisture.
Another way to control stench is through the purchase of new gear. All gear has a lifespan, and you don’t want to keep gear too long. If you start seeing mold or mildew forming on your son or daughter’s pads, it’s time for a change. Sticks break (and therefore are replaced) frequently, but the upgrade of other equipment tends to be overlooked.
Now that the equipment is clean or brand new, it is time to clean the hockey players them self. Make sure kids and teens clean themselves extensively to rehydrate skin and stay smelling fresh.
Even youth hockey players are right in the middle of the fight on smell. But don’t take my word for it … below is a complete guide by Pro Stock Hockey — with information from NHL trainers and staff — on how hockey players can defend against stench. For more info on stink Parent’s Guide To Hockey Equipment
AJ Lee is a Marketing Specialist for Pro Stock Hockey, an online resource for pro stock hockey equipment. He was born and raised in the southwest suburbs of Chicago and has been a huge Blackhawks fan his entire life. AJ picked up his first hockey stick at age 3 and has yet to put it down. He went on to play hockey at the college level for Illinois State University while earning his Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing.
Gloves For Sale including Pants and Sticks
Six Tips for a Healthy Winter Season with the Whole Family
As winter approaches, many parents are looking for ways to counter the often excess eating that comes with the holidays. It can be difficult to remain active in the cold weather, contributing to some extra winter weight. These simple steps can help you eat better and exercise more, based on proven principles and research from ChildObesity180 at Tufts University.
- Plan ahead to make sure healthy choices are always on-hand. Meal planning for the week ahead will not only ensure that you set up healthier options for day-to-day choices, but can also become a creative outlet for families to plan together. Plan for meals that have a balance of healthy fats, lean protein and complex carbohydrates. Try a “Meatless Monday” or similar theme night to simplify planning even more.
- Build a better lunch (together). Involving kids in the cooking process can get them more excited about what’s in their lunchbox and help you avoid calorie-dense fare in favor of more wholesome options. Try packing lunch-sized portions of fruits and veggies over the weekend to streamline lunchbox prep on cold winter school mornings.
- Join the “balanced plate” club. Instead of focusing on the “clean plate club”, which can send the message that portions don’t matter, talk to kids about how to set up a balanced plate. ChooseMyPlate.gov has resources and clear, colorful visuals. Challenge your family to serve themselves dinner and learn appropriate portions of fruits, veggies, grains, protein and dairy.
- Eat the rainbow. Foods that are (naturally) brightly colored are full of different antioxidants, vitamins and minerals—and they tend to be fruits and veggies. If you and your family “eat the rainbow” by including seasonal foods of every color between breakfast, lunch and dinner, you’ll be sure to get a mix of these essential nutrients. Younger children might have fun with a chart that helps them track their “rainbow foods” every day.
- Move more by making family activities physical activities. It’s easy to incorporate meaningful movement into typically sedentary activities. Try doing jumping jacks, pushups, or wall sits during TV time, especially in the commercial breaks. Make household chores a game, race, or obstacle course that encourages extra steps. Turn up the music and dance your way through dusting and vacuuming to increase the cardio impact – just don’t go too quickly to make sure you still pass the white glove test!
- Get out of the house to limit screen time. Especially in wintertime, the snow and cold can persuade us to keep warm indoors with our favorite shows. We all know it’s important to limit screen time, but it can be hard to cut back on a habit without building a new one. Making a rule to spend more time outside as a family – even just 20 minutes each day – can give you the extra push to stick with it. Try hiking, ice skating, basketball, or rock-climbing for a change of pace. Experimenting with new activities and adding a new spin to established routines will keep things interesting and increase your chances of finding activities that the whole family will enjoy. aabgsdfkdkdfkOver time it may even become second nature to head outside to play instead of straight toward the couch or the fridge.
Forming healthy habits like these early in a child’s life can help to prevent serious issues like obesity down the road—and they’ll last far longer than anything on your holiday shopping list. For more resources, visit www.ChildObesity180.org.
PEQUEÑOS VALIENTES EN UN MUNDO DE GIGANTES
En ésta oportunidad voy a escribir sobre un tema confuso para muchos y sensible para otros, pero que indudablemente, TODOS experimentamos con frecuencia: EL MIEDO.
Siempre pensé que había nacido con una dosis extra de Miedo… porque de pequeña me daba miedo hasta mi sombra. Ahora que soy Madre, he descubierto que el miedo NO es exclusivo de los niños; de hecho, ahora me enfrento con el miedo más grande que he sentido: Fallarle a mis hijos cuando más me necesiten!
Pero qué es el miedo?
“El miedo o temor es una emoción caracterizada por una intensa sensación desagradable provocada por la percepción de un peligro, real o supuesto… Es una emoción primaria que se deriva de la aversión natural al riesgo o la amenaza, y se manifiesta en todos los animales, incluyendo al ser humano”. Wikipedia.
Mi papá me dijo una vez: “Hija, el miedo, es en buena parte, desconocimiento a riesgos reales o imaginarios; así por ejemplo, si tienes miedo a un animal, debes estudiarlo para conocer realmente, cómo evitar que pueda dañarte? eso reduce tu miedo”. Recuerdo que cuando niña, él intentó enseñarme lo mismo de muchas formas, pero definitivamente no lo entendí hasta entonces!
Como padres enfrentamos una extensa lista de responsabilidades con nuestros hijos, pero la mayor de todas es la educación emocional para la vida! Y me pregunto… Cuán preparados emocionalmente estamos para enseñarles lo mejor en éste sentido?
No existe fórmula, ni un manual para eso, sólo existe el amor, la dedicación y la disposición que tengamos para aprender a enseñar a nuestros hijos! Aprender a canalizar correctamente los temores de nuestros hijos, será un aporte muy valioso en el desarrollo emocional de sus habilidades de liderazgo.
A continuación les comparto, lo que he definido como los siete (7) elementos clave para el manejo de los temores en nuestros hijos :
1.- El miedo es Natural: No trates el miedo como algo anormal, o inadecuado! TODOS sentimos miedo a algo! Si les asusta la oscuridad, enséñale trucos para vencerlo! Interactúa con ellos en la oscuridad, que vean tu seguridad! Diles que si cierran los ojos, cuentan hasta 10 y los abren, ya no estará tan oscuro!
2.- Los adultos también sentimos miedo, no regañes a tus hijos por sentir miedo, los adultos también lo sentimos. De hecho los adultos sentimos más miedo que los niños, por eso buscamos protegerlos siempre (Física, emocional y económicamente). Existen millones de lugares en los que un niño podría divertirse cómodamente sin miedo, mientras que un adulto NO. Por qué? Porque los adultos conocemos más riesgos que los niños.
3.- Los niños nacen sin miedos: en alguna parte aprendieron sobre esos “posibles riesgos” es clave descubrir la fuente y ayudarlos a comprender la realidad. Por ejemplo: “El Coco NO EXISTE” y no comparto que a mis hijos les digan lo contrario.
4.- El Miedo puede ser algo positivo. Puede ayudarnos en nuestra meta de protección y seguridad, pero debemos manejarlo con discreción. Por ejemplo: prefiero enseñar a mis hijos TEMOR por los extraños y que permanezcan a mi lado en la calle, si eso contribuye a reducir el riesgo de rapto!
5.- El mayor miedo que debemos sentir es NO arriesgarse a descubrir! La incapacidad mas grande es NO intentar, entonces temer a todo nos limita y hace mucho daño. La curiosidad es un don que debe ser muy bien administrado! Incentivemos en nuestros hijos la curiosidad, la investigación, la lectura!
6.- Un buen manejo del miedo, los ayuda a ser empáticos con otros niños: Mi hijo mayor, me ayuda mucho con su hermano. Cuando a mi hijo menor no le resulta sencillo entender mi explicación, él utiliza ese lenguaje infantil mágico; que aunque alguna vez lo usamos, en el camino a la “madurez” lo perdimos.
Y por último (pero para nada menos importante) mi favorito… el número 7…
7.- Los niños son mas valientes que los adultos. Para explicarles él séptimo elemento, les pido un minuto de imaginación…
…Imaginen abrir los ojos y descubrir que estás viviendo en una tierra de GIGANTES! Gigantes haciendo y diciendo cosas que NO entendemos; gigantes que se molestan con “facilidad” y gritan! Gigantes que pueden llegar a golpearte si dices algo que NO es de su agrado! Gigantes que deciden por ti! Gigantes que no se atreven a divertirse como TU lo haces, pero que te dicen que debes hacer lo que ellos dicen, porque sólo ellos saben lo que hay que hacer! Gigantes que algunas vez fueron pequeños como tu, pero que les molesta que NO actúes como ellos pese a que no sabes cómo se hace eso!… Imaginan una vida así? Seguramente NO, porque entonces vivirían escondidos sin querer hablar con ningún gigante!
Pues, así viven nuestros PEQUEÑOS VALIENTES EN UN MUNDO DE GIGANTES y aún así tienen el valor de jugar, reír, expresarse, preguntar, abrazar, pero sobre todo tienen el Valor de AMARTE por encima de todo!
Mis deseos para ti… Lagrimas de alegría, muchos abrazos, pero sobre todo NIÑOS FELICES!
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Un abrazo gigante y felicidad!
IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU, IT’S ABOUT ME!
By Miyelmi Josefina Abraham
Follow us on Instagram: @mypositivekidcoach
It is a common expression used in Spanish; from which, I would like to start writing this, the 1st article to my Blog of Life Coaching for parents. From this phrase, I can give off many analogies; but the main one, in my opinion, that words, reflect the biggest challenge of human relationships: The world does not revolve around you!
We live on a planet where there are as many perspectives as people are in it!
So, at this point, I would like to highlight the relevance in our lives and our relationships; of a word, that people often use but most of them don’t know how to practice: Empathy.
According to the website “definición.de “this word derives from the Greek word “empatheia”, also called interpersonal intelligence (a term coined by Howard Gardner) and refers to the cognitive ability of a person, to understand the emotional universe of another” .
Based on that definition, which I can take 3 keywords: skill, understanding and emotions; I could say that “empathy is the ability to understand emotions”. This means, that individuals need to develop skills for managing emotions as an essential tool for life. This teaching comes from early childhood; so, parents must help children, to discover and understand the feelings of others and their own. If they cannot express their emotions, it is difficult to develop a real empathy with someone around. You have to show them the world, with a vision of sensitivity.
So, Empathy, is part of our essence as human beings, begins with our ability to understand from another perspective (learning even on the expectation of others), it is not about to change our view, religion or values, it is simply to assess people’ perspectives and caring for others.
From my view; “Empathy is the key to change the world!” Starting because it would help prevent bullying and other forms of intolerance.
But how we can cultivate an empathy culture in our children?
There are several methods, tips and techniques that can help in this process. But I’m going to share with you what I have defined as the 6 commandments to help children develop empathy:
- Be empathetic with your children. That helps them to develop …
Self-esteem: be always positive.
Confidence: You know how fun it is to be a child, because you are also one *
Security: We learn from our mistakes.
2. Be empathetic to your environment …
Gratitude:after received a good service.
Sensibility: To forgive others for any wrongdoing to us, everyone has had a bad day once.
Equality: Each work is needed in the world. We are all valuable.3. Provide opportunities for children to practice empathy…
Teamwork: Sports, board games or any game that require decision.
Family: Let your children participate in family conflicts or challenges where they can review and understand the perspective of a family member.
Review: Talk with your children about controversial issues, giving your views on others and encouraging them to participate.4. Encourage your children to express their emotions.
Fun: Play with your kids something like… “My favorite thing is…” The best part of my day was…” “One thing that upset me was…” “My favorite person is … because I love it when …”
Freedom: Do not force your children to feel your way, to love something or someone just because you think is right. Explain why that is important for you, but respect his/her feelings. Also ask why and how you can help?5. Making mistakes is natural and is ok!
You have made mistakes and you keep doing. Kids are human as well. Being mad about their mistakes, just makes them feel, they are doing something wrong and you will be disappointed about them. You should say that is normal, and encourage them to find solutions.
- Being different is wonderful!
Perfection does not exist. It’s all about perspective!
Disillusionment is relative. It is an expectations improper handling.These 6 Commandments will help you to cultivate a culture of empathy with your children and maintain healthy relationships! So, START NOW!My wishes for you: Tears of joy, warm hugs and HAPPY children!If you liked this article, share it! and remember to follow us on Instagram: @mypositivekidcoach* Includes maturity and physical changes
Acai, Hibiscus & Banana Popsicles
It’s been so nice and warm the last couple of days that I couldn’t help myself and made some popsicles. I actually had one for breakfast this morning. They are super easy to make and quite healthy too. I made a reduction with acai pulp, hibiscus tea and banana. Then I swirled it around with Greek yogurt. A guilt free breakfast that tastes like dessert!
This recipe makes about 7 small popsicles
½ cup of dried hibiscus flowers
1 cup of boiling water
100gr of frozen acai pulp
8 tablespoons of honey
1 banana, chopped
2 cups of Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon of vanilla essence
For the chocolate shell:
300grs of dark chocolate, chopped
3 teaspoons of coconut oil
Dried coconut (optional)
Place the hibiscus flowers in a small bowl, add the boiling water and let it steep for 5 minutes.
Once the 5 minutes are up, pass the tea through a sieve and discard of the flowers.
Place the hibiscus tea, 6 tablespoons of honey, acai and banana in the blender. Blend until smooth.
Then place the mixture in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Let it reduce to a thick syrup while stirring so it doesn’t burn. This will take about 5 minutes. Then transfer it to a bowl to cool down.
Once the acai mixture has cooled down, start making the yogurt part. Whisk the Greek yogurt with the remaining 2 tablespoons of honey and vanilla.
Place a bit of the acai mixture in the popsicle molds, then add some of the Greek yogurt and then some more of the acai mixture. Use a toothpick or tip of a knife, to make the swirls. Insert the sticks and freeze overnight.
If you want to coat them in chocolate, microwave the dark chocolate with the coconut oil in intervals of 30 seconds. Stirring in between until it is completely melted. Dip the popsicles in the chocolate shell and immediately sprinkle some of the dried coconut. You can eat them right away. If you want to keep them in the freezer, wrap them individually in plastic film or a Ziploc bag.
Checklist for Playground Safety
It doesn’t matter if it’s a playground at school, in the community or rigged in your own backyard, any place where you’re going to let your child play is a place that needs to be inspected regularly for safety. What goes into a properly functioning playground? How can you conduct your own playground inspection in order to feel confident that your child or children can be safe? To help answer these questions, here’s a playground inspection checklist. To determine the security of a given play area, these are the things to look out for and avoid:
- Broken or Rusted Equipment: Loose bolts, busted swings, missing caps and cracks in materials are all warning signs that playground safety has been compromised. Be especially sure to look for cracks in plastics. Likewise, metals that rust or corrode over time become less durable and more dangerous. Check the places where metals come into contact with the ground and see if damage has occurred.
- Broken Glass and Trash: Debris around a playground is more than unsightly; it’s dangerous. Broken glass can cut kids and cause infections. Trash can create hazards that make it easier to fall or get hurt. Before letting children play at a site, make sure all broken glass, trash and debris is gone.
- Loose Anchoring: Check to see how securely playground components are anchored into the ground and other components. If the connections are loose, the equipment is more likely to come apart and cause injuries.
- Displaced Surfacing Any playground that has loose-fill surfacing needs to be inspected for displacement in high-traffic areas. Look especially under the swings and the slide exits — is the ground uniform and even? If not, it’s an accident waiting to happen. For playgrounds with unitary surfacing, inspect for any holes, flakes or buckling.
- User or Insect Damages: Vandalism at a playground can range from annoying graffiti to dangerous equipment tampering — inspect carefully to see what has been modified. Likewise, check for ways that local insects or animals may have tampered with the playground.
After conducting your playground inspection and finding none of the above problems in place, you can let kids play there happily and freely — what’s more, you can do it with full peace of mind.
Tips For Parents Of Youth Athletes
As parents, it’s only natural to want your children to succeed in endeavors like school and sports. Adults who put their kids into athletics, however, need to remember that sports stop being fun for kids when too much pressure falls on their shoulders to succeed instead of enjoying the game. While all parents have a high emotional stake in their children’s games, parents of players need to ensure that every action they take centers around just one outcome: making sure their kid is safe and happy on the field, ice or track.
Lead by Example
Inevitably, parents pass their characteristics to their kids, meaning that active parents will be more likely to raise active children. Indeed, there’s a genetic component to health, with overweight parents more likely to raise overweight children. Children imitate behavior they see every day. Those who watch their parents lounge while watching television will be less likely to enjoy sports and exercise, while those who watch their parents participate in active hobbies will want to pursue the same hobbies. Exhibit the type of lifestyle you want your child to exemplify, both in sports and in other activities, by committing to healthy lifestyles with enthusiasm, so that they will always want to lace up for the next game.
Let Kids Decide
While some parents may dream that their child will succeed at the same sports they played, not all kids enjoy the same sports as their parents. Some kids may prefer a more active sport, or a more cerebral sport, or a sport with more physicality. Give kids lots of time and room to find out which types of sports are their favorite — whether it’s football, tennis or Ping-Pong — and allow them to quit whenever it’s clear they aren’t having fun.
Kids, in general, aren’t great at making decisions. This doesn’t mean you should make the decision for them, but help them clearly understand the positives and negatives of playing a sport, then compare it with pros and cons of changing to another activity. Your child’s participation should make him/her a happier, healthier individual; whenever he/she is neither happy nor healthy it’s time to change the plan.
Never be the Second Coach
While every parent should show up to as many of their kids’ games as possible to support the team, parents need to understand the importance of distancing themselves from the coach or referees. Parents at a game are not the coaches: they do not have any input on which kids go onto the field and which come off, nor do they have the ability to determine penalties or misconduct. A bit of good-natured grumbling about a foul is one thing, but parents who are disruptive during a game or who demand that coaches adhere to their specific wishes lead to a tremendous source of stress for their kids and the entire team.
It’s typical for coaches to quit their position of authority due to overbearing parents attempting to “help” a team. One coach calls it the ESPN effect, where parents watch sports on television and feel like they have the experience and competency needed to determine which players should be on the field. When their kid plays a game, the best role the parent can assume is a fan; and the worst role a parent can take is a second coach.
Participate, When Possible
Parents who are used to their kid being away all day at school may find themselves using youth sports as a means of getting their son/daughter out of the house for another few hours each day. While youth sports offers parents the chance to run an occasional errand knowing that their child is busy, parents should never rely on youth sports for the express purpose of a babysitter. It’s crucial to get involved with the team, whether it is raising funds for uniforms, carpooling kids to and from practices, bringing snacks on game day, or organizing road games against out-of-town teams. Parents who put in the elbow grease to make the team stronger will find their kids invest more effort and enjoy the process than parents who use it as a way to keep their child occupied.
About the author:
AJ Lee is a Marketing Specialist at Pro Stock Hockey, an online resource for pro stock hockey equipment. He picked up his first hockey stick at age 3 and hasn’t put it down yet. He was born and raised in the southwest suburbs of Chicago and has been a huge Blackhawks fan his entire life.