By Dave Sebastian,
The first few days of this year’s Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games have already seen fierce competition — and surprises. Novak Djokovic, whose name tops tennis rankings, concluded his first round at the Olympics in tears, losing his much-awaited chance of winning another Olympics medal.
Medal-winning athletes are usually hailed as heroes in their respective countries. But those cast aside and not pictured on headlines also serve an inspiration to families who spectate through their television screens. Indeed, maintaining a positive attitude after admitting defeat is an essential trait that parents could teach their children — and sports is a way to build that.
Though parents today have arguably become busier, office workload should not be an excuse for overlooking parent-child engagements. And despite their practicality, gadgets are not the best educational tools — they could even result detrimental effects. So, we here at CubbyCase have come up with several tips for busy parents who want to keep their children sporty while enjoying quality time — be it outdoors or indoors:
1. Routinely play games at home
Are you already accustomed to hearing your 7-year-old crying for additional TV hours when you get home from work? Well, sparing 30 minutes or so for some quick games every Monday or Thursday night wouldn’t interfere much with your schedule. Some activities you could try are hide-and-seek, treasure hunt, or Twister — which is somewhat a yoga workout. Games could be fun, engaging, and hopefully put your child to sleep faster! For the less active parents, you could try mind sports such as chess or board games.
2. Let your child play outside
Has your child ever asked for your permission to go outdoors to play with his or her friends? Outdoor games such as catching, soccer, and basketball actually directly provide children with the experience of both winning and losing. As children engage and socialize with their peers, they also learn how to handle failures and understand the importance of perseverance.
3. Walk the dog
Walking the dog — or, perhaps, strolling outdoors in general — serves an invaluable bonding activity for parents and children. Besides boosting physical fitness and health, outdoor walks or runs also provide opportunities for parent-child educational engagements such as learning about different types of animals or even resolving that feud with his or her classmate. Charity runs or races, in particular, also instill the fair and competitive spirit in your child.
Those are just a few of the activities parents could do to implant positive attitudes in their children. Olympics athletes, as mentioned in the beginning, show us that the character development starts from within — shaped by engagements and interactions more than mere gadgets and tools. In the end, Djokovic said to The New York Times, “At the decisive moments, [Juan Martín del Potro] just came up with some extraordinary tennis, and I have to congratulate him.”
Success is earned by going through and understanding failure — parents, you reserve a dominant role in instilling such values in your children, especially during their formative years.