No matter what sport you encourage your child to play, it's always going to be beneficial in some way. According to Stanford Children's Health, organized sports can improve your child's emotional, mental, and physical wellbeing, as well as their interpersonal skills.
But as a parent, you want to consider whether your child is cut out to play individual or team sports — as both have their own developmental benefits. Naturally, it's easier to choose a sport when your child has a passion for it.
When it comes to baseball, there are few sports in the world more popular and entertaining to watch, or beneficial for your child. Learn more about how your little one can benefit in this blog.
1. Baseball teaches your child how to work with others
In short, baseball is one of the best sports to teach your child about teamwork. It's a sport that allows your child to grow from an individual to an athlete, all while leaning on their team for support.
After all, learning the importance of teamwork is more important than being the star of the game! Lessons like this can easily translate into your child’s work later in life —either in school work or their career — it’s about respecting those around you.
2. Baseball builds your child's confidence and self-esteem
Most children start off their first baseball season a little nervous and unsure of themselves. We’re not born as amazing athletes. It takes time, and failure along the way!
But self-confidence is a brilliant by-product of this slow progression of improvement. Over time, your child's self-esteem and belief in themselves will also begin to improve. Missing the ball, struggling with the bat, or being struck out may feel like failure, initially. But this teaches your child mental resilience, improves their skill, and builds up their confidence.
3. It improves your child's gross motor skills
What are gross motor skills? Basically, this is the motor movement of your legs, upper body, and core. It also includes your balancing skills.
Baseball is a full-body workout, it requires stamina, and a fair amount of strength. This is a good sport for keeping your child fit and healthy while preparing them for other contact or organized sports they may be interested in playing.
4. It boosts their motor planning skills
Motor planning is related to how your brain communicates with your body and its corresponding motor skills. In other words, baseball is a great way to improve your child's coordination and cognition.
The game requires concentration — your child has to carefully line-up their bat with a ball moving at high speed. Hitting the ball, and hitting it well, requires a good level of motor planning which can benefit children with a myriad of other tasks in life, too.
5. Baseball promotes healthy family interaction
One of the best things about baseball is that it's a family game where everyone can get involved.
Parents and siblings can all practice together over the weekends or in their free time. Parents can offer coaching and tips on how to improve. All-in-all, this promotes family time and a legitimate reason to connect in a fun and playful way.
6. It keeps your little one healthy
Any type of sport is going to be good for your child's overall health, but most notably, their physical condition. Baseball is a game that focuses on cardiovascular fitness, upper-body strength, and balance. Overall, this works a range of different muscles and motor functions throughout the body, helping to keep your child fit and healthy.
To add to this, baseball promotes spending time outdoors, unplugged from technology. It offers vitamin-D exposure, fresh air, and a chance to connect with nature, which can also have huge mental health benefits.
7. Baseball builds your child's social skills
Working with a team is one of the best ways to bring your child out of their shell and build up their interpersonal skills. Not only can they develop their social skills, but your child will most likely make lifelong friendships, too.
Baseball teaches children how to treat others with respect, how to behave appropriately when they lose, how to take turns, share, and follow directions. All of which are important social skills to carry into adult life.
8. It does wonders for attention span and focus
If your child has a tough time paying attention to things or focusing on something for a period of time, baseball can change all of that.
In the grand scheme of the game, baseball is not actually a fast-action sport. When you aren't batting or running the bases, you are standing around in an outfield position. Or, you're sitting in the dugout. This requires patience and concentration so that you can keep up with what's happening in the game.
Baseball teaches your child how to wait their turn, pay attention to the score, number of outs, and who is batting. All the while cheering on and supporting their teammates!
9. It improves their physics and math skills
Believe it or not, math is a big part of the game of baseball. For example, you have to keep track of the score and work out batting averages — both of which require mathematics.
To add to this, the game of baseball also relies on an element of physics. Your child will learn about the importance of velocity, energy, and force in order to swing and hit the ball in the right direction.
Time to hit a home run!
If you've had your doubts about team or contact sports for children, baseball is a sport you really shouldn't second guess. You can help your child reach important developmental milestones by encouraging their participation, all while building wonderful childhood memories. Isn’t that a win-win?