Kids and sport – how much is too much?

Kids love sport, but at what point are they doing too much of it? How can you tell if it’s become too much?

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Sport for general fitness

According to NHS Livewell, children aged 5-18 should be engaged with at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise per day. Perhaps this should be a good indicator of how much is too much, although it’s worth remembering that some of this time should be child-led exercise, such as playing in the park or the woods.

Elite sporting children

Children in elite squads or teams can find stress and strain on their body actually leads to physical problems later on. They also face emotional imbalance, as they stress about their performance and how to make coaches and parents happy. Look out for signs that your child is no longer enjoying their elite level of sport – this may manifest as mood swings, refusal to get out of bed or reluctance to attend. If your child is on an elite team or squad, or indeed participates in any sport at a very high level, check in every so often to ensure they are happy. Just because they could be the next Andy Murray, it doesn’t mean you should compromise their long term emotional and physical wellbeing to get there.

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Too many sports

For some children, it’s simply the case that they have been enrolled in too many sports. Maybe your child does running club on Monday, karate on … Read More