Everyone benefits from being active, whatever their age. Read on for tips on which sports are best for different age groups, from young children right up to retirement and beyond.
Your youngest child just recently learned to walk, so participating in a team sport probably isn't quite on the agenda just yet. Still, games that involve running, jumping, climbing, catching and throwing all set a good foundation. Now is also a good time to begin basic swimming instruction or at least expose your child to the water. Consider teaching your child to play tag, hide and seek, hopscotch, use a Hula Hoop, or ride a tricycle or big wheel. Toddlers can also play toddler baseball with the large ball and bat.
Believe it or not, between the ages of 4-5, some children are ready to begin to start sports. Many young children join soccer teams. They might not play a real cut-throat game and follow all the rules, but coaches and teachers will show them the basic moves and the basic rules and have them running around, playing games in practice. T-ball is also something kids can begin, as well as junior flag football. Some Olympic athletes began ice skating, skiing, and swimming at this early age, and this is an age children can learn to use golf clubs. It worked for Tiger Woods.
These are the prime years to begin baseball, junior football, swimming, running or racing, softball, more formal soccer leagues, ice skating, hockey, gymnastics and martial arts. And don't forget that games like dodgeball, kickball, tetherball and freeze tag are a lot of fun. This is a good time to start the bunny hill at the ski lodge, or begin to learn basic fishing skills.
Middle School and High School
At this age, kids can begin to understand more complicated rules, so baseball, football, basketball, field hockey, ice hockey, and volleyball are all good choices. Track and field, golf, martial arts, gymnastics, skiing, snowboarding, ice skating and hockey are all good options. For the college bound, it's not a bad idea to consider an unusual sport, such as lacrosse if your teen happens to have exceptional skills on a sport that is less popular than football, for example, he or she may have a better opportunity to qualify for a unique scholarship.
Once you've graduated from high school and you're out in the work world, joining an organized sport doesn’t feel quite as easy. Nevertheless, you can meet up with people and play baseball, basketball, soccer, field hockey, ultimate Frisbee, bowling, tennis, or golf. Now's a great time for individual activities such as running so why not work toward a 5K, 10K or marathon? You've got the money and the vacation time so why not try rock climbing, wind surfing, paddle boarding, skiing or scuba diving? The world is your oyster and maybe you'll find one while diving. Other individual activities you could try: pilates, yoga, biking, fencing, and martial arts. They're good for the body and the soul.
Many older adults enjoy sports that are less strenuous, but still keep the body healthy and the mind active. Consider tennis, golfing or biking. Many older adults are still able to run; others enjoy a daily stroll. If aching joints are a problem, swimming may be a comforting way to get in your exercise.
Whether you're five or fifty, there's a sport that's just right for you. Keeping active and trying new sports is a great way to keep your mind and body in shape as you age. Consider taking up a new sport every few years. You'll not only make new friends and keep healthy, you might also tap into a new skill you didn't know you had.
Russell (Rusty) Hart is the founder of the Health, Fitness & Sport Club, a website devoted to the promotion of health, fitness and wellness. The site encompasses a wide variety of health and fitness activities including general health matters, pilates, yoga, CrossFit, treadmill training, running, kettlebell, swimming, baseball, camping, hunting, HIIT, triathlons, extreme sports, equestrian and more. Should this subject matter be of interest you can visit the HF & S Club home site where you'll find over 1,300 quality posts with new posts being published daily. To quickly access those that are of interest you can select any of 20 Categories broken down by over 260 Sub-Categories for easy access.
You can also visit visit any of the HF & S Club's four Stores all of which feature 1,000s of sports and health products at the very best prices.
Click the hyperlink to know much more Basic Health Tips