Choose the Best Sport for Your Kid

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What Sport; What Age

Sport Best age to start What kids need to know What kids will learn
Swimming Newborn to toddler for basic swim classes. 5 or 6 years for competitive swimming. A child needs to know a few basic swimming strokes to compete in swim meets. Swimming provides cardiovascular exercise without putting any stress on a child's bones. Swimmers also develop endurance and self-discipline.
Gymnas-tics 2 or 3 year-olds can take basic movement classes. A child must have control of her body and be able to do basic moves such as forward rolls. Any child at any age can benefit. Gymnasts learn gross motor skills, balance, flexibility and strength.
T-Ball 3 or 4 years A player needs to know how to swing a bat and catch a ball. Players gain confidence by making contact with the ball and have fun running around the field with their friends.
Soccer 5 or 6 years for team competition, but children can play soccer-like games as young as 3 years. A child must know how to run and kick, how to play as a team and move the ball up the field Kids learn teamwork and develop their attention span.

Baseball/
Softball

5 or 6 years A child should be able to complete a throwing motion. Young athletes learn how to track a moving object with their eyes and improve hand-eye coordination.
Basketball 7 or 8 years A player needs to be able to dribble, shoot and pass a ball. Children learn about teamwork and precision of their movements.

Ice Hockey/
Field Hockey

7 or 8 years A child needs to skate well for ice hockey. A field hockey player needs endurance and the ability to hit the ball consistently. Players learn balance (in ice hockey), teamwork and how to track an object with their eyes.
Tennis 8 or 9 years A player needs to be able to swing a racket, which is similar to throwing a ball. In addition, complex rules make tennis a difficult sport to learn. Children develop hand-eye coordination.
Football 10 to 12 year-olds can join in non-tackle games, but kids should be 13 or 14 years old for tackle games. Experts advise waiting until children are older to prevent injury to growing bones and muscles. A football player needs to be able to throw and catch a ball. Athletes learn about teamwork and discipline.
Track/Cross Country Junior high school or 12 or 13 years. Kids need endurance to run long distances. Runners learn mental discipline while getting cardiovascular exercise.

 

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