Get Active for National Youth Sports Week
Let’s admit it, 2020 has been a rough year. This is especially true for energetic kids who may be cooped up in the house all day. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many sports programs have been cancelled or paused. Luckily, National Youth Sports Week comes at the perfect time to help combat this. July 20 through the 24th is a time to celebrate youth sports!
The Purpose of National Youth Sports Week
Each year, thousands of youth sports coaches, athletic directors, recreation directors, association members, sponsors, young athletes, and parents across the country show their support for National Youth Sports Week. According to the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS), the key is to focus on “P.L.A.Y.S.”:
- Physical activity
- Living healthy
- Youth development
Obviously, during our current health crisis, this is easier said than done. Many kids have been stuck in the house for months, becoming couch potatoes. We’ve offered tips to keep kids busy during quarantine, but sometimes, organized sports are the best solution to make sure kids are getting all five elements of “P.L.A.Y.S.”. Depending on your local social distancing guidelines, this can be any number of activities, from golf to baseball and beyond. Overall, the goal is to promote healthy lifestyles for children and their families through sports.
To learn more about National Youth Sports Week, visit the official NCYS website. There, you can discover ways to promote physical activity, safety, and leadership in your local community.
Physically Fit Kids Do Better in School
Beyond socialization and physical fitness, there are numerous educational benefits to helping children become more active. A new study in the Journal of School Health found that physically fit kids scored better on standardized math and English tests than their less fit peers.
The researchers discovered that there is a significant relationship between students’ academic achievement and physical fitness. The odds of passing both standardized math and English tests increased as the number of fitness tests passed increased. As you can see, being physically fit is more helpful than it first seems. It can improve all aspects of a child’s life.
Safety Always Comes First
While activity and sports have many benefits, safety should always come first. Besides social distancing, each sport and activity often has rigorous safety rules that should be obeyed. For example, it’s important for parents and coaches to make sure kids are keeping their eyes safe from flying balls, harsh pool chemicals or other hazards. To do this, be sure to encourage young athletes to wear eye protection when necessary. Sports-related eye injuries are more common than most people realize.
Beyond this, proper safety equipment and precautions are a must, both for organized play or just horsing around in the backyard. Concussions in children are a far-too-common injury. If not properly treated, they can quickly become very dangerous. Make sure that children are wearing helmets whenever necessary, including when they’re on bikes or playing contact sports. We strive to help kids stay active and entertained, but safety should always take top priority.