Can a shy introverted child flourish in a competitive sports environment?

Backyard Sports Timeout

Backyard Sports Timeout – Where our coaches field parents’ questions about Team Sports and offer ways to make it the Fun, Enriching Experience it’s supposed to be

Q: My child is very shy and we thought that joining a team sport might be a way to get her out of her shell. Can a shy, introverted child flourish in a competitive sports environment?

shy kids play sports

A: First we need to understand that a team is comprised of young players with differing levels of ability and unique personalities. The model of a successful team is one where all those unique individuals can come together in harmony. Not everyone is going to be a leader. Not everyone is going to be a superstar. Not everyone is going to have that kind of flamboyant take charge personality. There’s room on teams for kids across the temperament and personality spectrum.

I think more than anything, the notion of a shy child being unsuccessful on a playing field is a manifestation of skewed parental observations. Parents see attention and accolades going to the assertive or extroverted kids or to players who are scoring the goals and lose confidence in their shy reserved child’s ability to compete. But not everyone is a goal scorer. We have role players on teams. It takes those role players to make a team successful.

That said, a great program or a great coach will recognize shyness in a young player. The right program and coach will shepherd that kid so she finds HER role and makes her feel successful in the environment, which aligns with who she is and what her ability level is.

The Big Takeaway: Once the child is accepted among her teammates and sees firsthand that she can play this sport, interact with other kids and do well in her own way, it’s a wonderful benefit for the child. That’s the success of the playing field. That’s where we see the skills learned between the lines positively affecting a child’s life outside the lines. The idea of getting out of ones comfort zone without fear of making a mistake translates to so many other aspects of a child’s life. They are going to remember that lesson and apply it to their schoolwork, their relationships and their career. They’re going to have more confidence in themselves.

Backyard Sports provides weekend and after school sports instruction and game play for boys and girls ages 4-16 years old. Our programs are designed for EVERY child who desires a positive and healthy sports experience. #CompetitiveSportsDoneRight

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