Having kids is a great excuse to release your inner child and relive your sporting days. It’s also a brilliant way of keeping the kids fit and healthy, whilst also keeping fit and healthy yourself (no need to drag yourself down the gym). Here are some great sports for you and your anklebiters to have a go at.
You’ll notice that parks are full of parents having a kick-about with their kids. That’s because it’s so easy to play without preparation. All you need is a ball and maybe a couple of jumpers to use as improvised goalposts (or a pair of tree trunks), and you can start doing penalty shoot-outs.
Certainly not one of the more physically-demanding sports, a trip to the bowling alley still makes a good cheap day out and can inspire competitiveness (everyone wants to beat dad’s score!). You’ll probably need to put the barriers up and expect to be booed every time you score a strike.
This popular sport is another cheap and easy one to play with the kids. Wooden baseball bats aren’t hard to find. Other than that all you need is a ball, a park to play in, and some bags/tree stumps to use as bases. Baseball teaches hand-eye co-ordination, whilst also incorporating running, throwing and catching. It’s less technical than cricket, although ideally requires three or more people to play.
Of all the racquet sports, badminton is one of the better ones to play with the kids as you can more easily regulate the flight of the shuttlecock than you can with a ball, making it easier for the children to get into without throwing a strop because it’s too hard. Unfortunately, this doesn’t make a good outdoor game due to the wind. However, most sports centres will have courts and equipment that you can rent out cheaply for an hour or so.
One of the best sports to keep your cardiovascular fitness up, cycling is also a great way of teaching children road safety. If you have any nearby countryside, you could also take a day out the weekend to cycle to a nearby village for a pub lunch (setting a pub as the destination is a great motivation). Alternatively, you could go for a picnic somewhere with all the family. Cycling can also be used to spice otherwise boring commutes, such as dropping off and picking up the kids from school, or going into town to the bank with the kids.
A popular sport for families, Martial Arts teaches kids discipline, improves fitness, as well decreasing that need for play-fighting they may have. You can also get fit and healthy in the process, as well as trying your hand at a new exciting sport. Martial Arts is an expensive hobby (the suit, the equipment, the lessons), but it has a lot of benefits that make it worthwhile.