Thursday, May 27, 2010

It's time for childhood sports

AwesomeCloud is two years old. That means in a year he'll be three, and when he's three, it'll be time to begin the process of choosing sports to enroll him in.

Three. Really? I played soccer for one year when I was ten, and I didn't join Brownies until I was eight.

So I was always the oldest kid whenever I finally joined something. We're not going to do that to AwesomeCloud. Other people start their kids early, and we'll... give it some thought, at least.

Here are my specific thoughts:

Hockey: My brother said it's important to get the kid on ice skates early, or else he'll struggle to keep up with all of his teammates who were skating at age three. This may be so. I can't stay upright on roller skates, so there's no way I'm teaching him how to ice skate. The equipment is expensive, the games are at 6 AM, and the hockey parents are insane. (Maybe not all of them, but the ons in the news are.) Verdict: No.

Tennis: I was a very casual tennis player. I could serve, but after that the game tended to fall apart. However, the more you play, the better you get, and once you learn to get it over the net with some regularity, tennis is a lot of fun. It can even be relaxing, if you're not McEnroe. Plus you can wear normal clothes, you can use the same tennis racket for years, and the tennis courts are right across the street from our house! Will he be playing real tennis at age three? No. Will we get him a toddler racket and let him whack balls around? Yes.

Football: Easy one. Not until high school. Then he'll have to beg and plead and present a good case for why football won't give him brain damage and end his career prospects as a neurosurgeon. Even then, the verdict may still be No.

Soccer: I like soccer. I played it for a year. It's simple, easy to play even without a full understanding of the rules, and popular all over the world. No matter where he goes, from Belize to Borneo, he'll be able to find someone to play soccer with. (Or futbol.) At age three he may be barely bigger than the ball, but he may still be able to kick it, and that's what counts. Verdict: Yes.

Basketball: What, my little pipsqueak? Besides, three-year-olds don'y play basketball. Three-year-olds play toss into a toddler-sized basketball hoop. Cloud does that already. If he wants to play kids' league in coming years, I'll let him, but he may be too short to get very far. Verdict: Sure, I guess, we could try it.

Martial arts: Yes, yes, many times yes! What small child doesn't like dressing up in a loose robe, going barefoot, and kicking up high in the air while shouting "Hi-ya!"? I wish I'd done it. Martial arts build self-esteem right from the beginning, and they don't have seasons or tons of special equipment. The rules can be added as they learn. We'd sign him up for Kung Fu, of course. Gotta go with the Chinese arts. Verdict: Absolutely, let's go, sign him right up!

Baseball: I like watching baseball. My husband didn't like playing in little league, but some kids do. I don't see anything wrong with baseball. If he's interested, Yes.

Okay. After he's settled into sports, we'll evaluate his options for musical instruments. I'm thinking drums.


  1. What, no baseball? Cloud could be the next Dustin Pedroia.