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My 3.5 year old DD seems to hate playing soccer...advice please?

Last night was the first night of soccer for DD this spring. Her cousin was in it last year, and she was very excited to play, but when we got there, she freaked out and refused to play. She did get out once with her team, and even kicked the ball, but then got run over by all the other players.
I put her in it not so much for the sport, but to meet other kids. I am a SAHM, and while she plays well with her cousins and a couple of friends, she doesn't get a lot of social interaction. For that reason, I really want her to keep going, but at the same time I don't want to scar her emotionally by forcing her.
Anyone have any advice?

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Asked by sunshine82 at 2:24 PM on May. 3, 2011 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 9 (320 Credits)
Answers (12)
  • Keep bringing her. She'll learn to like it. It's new, that's all.

    Answer by mompam at 2:25 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • My dd was really shy when she started softball last summer and than cheer in the fall. In fact she even started crying the first time we had practice for cheerleading. It was not because she was anti social, she loves meeting people, she just didnt know what she was doing. It could be as simple as that with yours. Try coaching at home and make sure they know how to play so they dont feel shy or awkward playing. If for some reason that doesnt work move onto another sport. There are plenty out there. My dd prefers dance and cheer leading over any other sport.

    Answer by gemgem at 2:26 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • It was only the first time. Give it a chance. I've never heard of anyone having issues from being made to play a sport.

    Answer by hootie826 at 2:27 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • Give it more of a chance. You can hardly ever tell the first time if a kid is going to like something.

    If you find soccer isn't the right thing for her, there's also T-Ball. And then tumbling/dance/cheer places.

    Answer by AllAboutKeeley at 2:31 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • I wouldnt "make her". It's suppose to be fun for her, not anxiety, fear, and somethingshe has to do for your sake. Think about people running towards you at 3 yrs old shoving or pushing. The Y offers different things, swimming, etc.

    Answer by kkbird at 2:33 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • I agree with kkbird -- it might be scary for a 3 year old -- around here kids are not aloud to play soccar until they are 5 .... I would let her go again but if she really doesnt like it you shouldnt make her go - because then it turns into something she is is "forced" to go to and it isnt fun anymore - and isnt sports suppose to be fun ?

    I would talk to her and see if maybe she still doesnt like it after another time or two, if she wants to try dance or tball ?

    Answer by 2lilbumblebees at 2:41 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • At 3 years old kids should just be playing backyard sports with there cousins. Why push at 3.

    Answer by sew4heaven at 2:45 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • I'm going thru this w/my daughter (she's 4) and T-Ball. She was all for it at first and then a few practices and games into it and she doesn't want to go.

    I told her: I understand you don't like it, and that is ok. But you are part of a team right now and they are counting on you. While you are at practice or games, give it your best. The season is over and after that you won't have to play it ever again if you don't want.

    Answer by cheekycherub at 3:10 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • I would encourage her by making play dates with the other kids on the team, meeting at the park and kicking the ball around etc. If after a few more games she is still hesitant, than this may not be sport or activity for her. Try dance, art classes, music or just play dates for social activity. I believe in letting my children guide me in what they want to do and not pushing them to do what I want them to do.

    Answer by 2and2onway at 4:32 PM on May. 3, 2011

  • She's young... take her but don't force her into anything. Eventually she'll join in and have fun or hate it then you try something new. My oldest was 5 when we tried soccer for the 1st time - she cried all season then we triend softball and she's played since (now 15).

    Answer by monshine2 at 6:31 PM on May. 3, 2011

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