Our two-year old, Lucas, is all boy. He would be outside with a ball or piece of sporting equipment 24/7 if we’d let him. I spent the month of February looking at spring and early-summer organized sports for children that are age two in our area, particularly t-ball because he loves baseball and thought he would really enjoy “playing” with a group of kids his age.
I was surprised to learn from a number of calls and emails to different sports organizations that baseball doesn’t start till they are 3, a majority of places not till 4 and up. One places response even gave me “mom-guilt” for even asking about baseball for a two-year old and then went on to say “We do offer tennis skills starting at 2.” Huh?! To me that makes no sense. At. All.
Now, let me go a bit further and say, we weren’t looking for two year olds to be playing in weekend long tournaments or throwing fast-pitch, but I thought at least the organization, learning to throw back and forth, holding and wearing a glove, etc. would all be great skills and also socialization things for kids this age (Maybe I’m on to the next big thing in organized sports for toddlers)?
We ended up registering him for Tiny Tykes Soccer at Monroeville Park starting in April for 9 weeks. It will be a nice trial-run and a great activity for a Saturday afternoon as the weather warms up.
Do you have experience with organized sports for young children? What specific programs have your children tried, inside or outside activities, at age 2 or 3? From the handful of people that we’ve spoken with, there are many different opinions on things like:
- What age should you register your children for organized activities/sports?
- How many activities or sports programs should children be involved in without them getting burnt out?
- If they don’t like it, or don’t take to it right away, have you just stopped taking them? Or kept going through the “season?” (I don’t know about you, but our toddler’s taste changes daily!)
- Are there any specific organizations in the Southwestern PA area that run great programs that you and your children love?
These are just some of the things we’ve been thinking and asking as we embark on our first parenting experience with organized sports. I really believe there’s no right or wrong answer to any of the above questions.
Are there specific questions that you have asked when your kids started their programs or sports? Please share them below. We find the approaches, to sports and activities, that parents are taking, especially prior to them being in elementary school, to be interesting and helpful as Luke transitions from “baby” to “active-social-toddler” stage.