Parents all know it can be extremely hard to motivate your children these days. In a generation of kids that have become obsessed with computing games and technology, it seems almost impossible to tear them away from the popular networking sites.

Sometimes, attempts as parents to motivate your children can feel like you’re losing an uphill battle. Let’s face it you can’t make your child care just because you do, your motivation push can sometimes reflect badly and make them become less motivated – which is very frustrating. Football is the ultimate team game and can be very motivating, the ethic of working together as a team allows encouragement to come together as a team and help support each other to do well and play the best game, as a team that you can play.

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Try to encourage your child to play a football as it’s one of the best ways to help them to develop healthy habits. As we now live in a nation where obesity is on the rise, it is a great time to take a proactive approach to parenting, make your child aware that lifestyle choices such as regular exercise and healthy sensible eating can set them up for life.

There is a danger of taking your parenting support too far – instead of putting an emphasis on winning the football game – emphasise the taking part, as at the end of the day this is what really does count.

Here are some tips to help to motivate your child at football:

  1. Listen – Start by listening to your child and pick up on what sports they enjoy and what to take part in. Motivation will come easier if they enjoy the sport and are having fun. Football is a great game to encourage both girls and boy to be involved in as in gives them a sense of team work from a young age.
  2. Support – Make sure you show your child support in their chosen decisions; football may not be the sport that you would have chosen for them to play. Because if you try to push a sport onto your child that they don’t like or enjoy, this will only cause conflict and a bad mood, and may reflect badly on their school life.
  3. Influence – It can have a massive influence on your child, if you show an interest and be supportive in their football, without being too serious, this will encourage your child to set his/her own goals.
  4. Set Goals – A good way for your child to become more focused is to inspire them to set goals, to allow them to measure their performance. This should have a great effect of the rest of their schooling and reflect very well on the pitch.
  5. Team work – It can be helpful for your child, if they’re a keen sports person to define realistic and achievable goals, to help gently push them-selves. Football is very much about team spirit and coming together as a team, to gain results. To emphasis this to your child may encourage them to be more involved and show more of an interest in the game.
  6. Making Mistakes – It’s only natural for a child to make mistakes, so let this happen without creating a fuss; after all it is a part of learning and will encourage them to improve. This may even have a positive impact of their school subjects, so hopefully a win, win situation.
  7. Health Benefits – Reinforce to your child that football is extremely important and rewarding not only for achieving set goals but it has amazing effects of health and it can also set them up to be more confident as individuals.

As a parent, please take into account, that a child wants to play a sport usually because they enjoy it or have a natural talent for it. Football is all about discovering ability, developing and particularly about having fun, whilst almost unnoticeably to the child, it helps to improve their social skills with added benefits to their health.

When football becomes pressure lead with unrealistic targets being set for a child this usually creates stress and will in many cases make a child lose interest and maybe drop out. It’s a good idea to keep a close eye on how the football team is ran and make sure your child is having fun when they’re take part in the game. Combined with the right level of encouragement your child has a better chance of doing well and being successful the football.

Here are seven important pointers to help motivate your child at football:

  • Praise your child for his/ her efforts both in practices and after the game
  • Encourage your child to praise one another, reflecting on team spirit
  • Provide side-line support where necessary
  • At times, allow individual freedom
  • Make sure you speak to your child regularly to see if they still love the sport
  • Set realistic and achievable goals for your child
  • Highlight the positive aspects that happen on the pitch