Chances are, you’ve heard the stereotypes before: That mom who drives a minivan. The one who always has juice boxes and snacks at the ready in a cooler in her car. Maybe she’s always got her hair up in a messy bun, and always seems to be burning gas by running one kid to this practice and another to that practice.
Yes, the ever-popular “soccer mom” is alive and well, and unfortunately remains at the root of many stereotypes. While it can be all in good fun to make gentle jokes about the soccer mom’s lifestyle, there are actually more benefits to it than most people realize.
Being a soccer mom not only encourages your family to stay active and fit, but it can create traits and habits in your kids that will stick with them for a lifetime, including good sportsmanship and a sense of responsibility.
Plus, let’s be honest — soccer moms usually have an intense schedule to keep up with. Soccer moms are super moms!
So, what are the real perks of this busy, active lifestyle?
An Active and Fit Lifestyle
Soccer moms aren’t limited to one sport, of course. There are football moms, baseball moms – the list goes on! But, they all have one thing in common: They’re encouraging their kids to lead active, healthy lives.
Playing a sport can show your children that exercise is fun, and it doesn’t have to be a chore. That can make it more likely for them to continue those healthy fitness habits as they get older. You also don’t have to limit your child to one sport — in fact, research has shown that kids who participate in more than one sport are often more than just physically fit. Getting involved in multiple sports can help children to improve their academic skills and reduce the risk of psychological burnout. Kids who play multiple sports are also at a lower risk of developing injuries since the body is able to adapt to different styles of movement and different types of training.
New Skills That Go Beyond the Competition
When most people think about sports and competition, they think about athleticism, skill, and talent. But, being a soccer mom and getting your kids involved in sports is about so much more than winning games or “being the best.” You could be fostering skills within your children that will last a lifetime.
That includes encouraging positive behaviors that will stay with them. It’s not always easy for kids to be able to express themselves or develop social skills on their own, but sports help them to do that in a variety of ways. When they’re part of a team, they develop social skills, have a better understanding of rules and expectations, and can learn more about how to express their needs and desires appropriately.
As a result of these benefits, it’s less likely for your child to have low self-esteem. They also have a lower risk of following negative influences, since most organized sports encourage healthy living, positive attitudes, and foster a team environment where everyone looks after each other.
Yes, sports can do all of that!
The Whole Family Can Get Involved
Living the soccer mom lifestyle is about more than just driving your kids around from one practice to another. It’s a great way to get your whole family involved in an active lifestyle.
If you have more than one child, get your younger kids involved in fitness early. Bring them with you to their older siblings’ practices or games, or schedule family fitness outings, like bowling, where everyone can participate. While bowling might not seem like the most strenuous of sports, it’s something everyone can do (including you!), and it gets your body moving and encourages active play. Bowling also can improve balance and hand-eye coordination.
It doesn’t matter which activities you decide to do, as long as you encourage healthy lifestyles within your family. Have outdoor activity nights at home for your kids to jump rope and hula hoop. Pick up a game of basketball with your older kids, and bring plenty of healthy snacks along!
Family play also does more for your kids than you might think. It helps with their physical fitness, of course, but it also gives them an opportunity to see you act a little silly and have fun. That’s a good thing for kids to witness from time to time. There’s also no better way to increase family bonding and bring everyone closer together.
Social Activity For Less “Sporty” Kids
We’ve all seen the kids who stare up at the clouds or sit down in the middle of the field during a game. It’s a fact of life that not all kids are going to enjoy competitive sports, but there are still activities you can get them involved in that foster some of the same principles that being on a sports team does.
If your child is very inquisitive, you might get them a metal detector and enroll them in a treasure hunting club. This will get them in a social activity that involves a lot of walking, with the added bonus of being educational. Even a hiking club that focuses on learning about nature would foster these same benefits.
The overall health of your family depends on spending quality time together, developing routines, and encouraging everyone to eat well and stay active. So, while the “soccer mom” title may get a lot of flack, it’s actually an important role for any mother with kids in sports to play. Wear it with pride, be the encourager of healthy lifestyles within your family, and get everyone moving!
What are your thoughts? Please share in the comments below. I really would love to know.
Until next time, shine amongst the stars!
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