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Elementary School Kids Elementary School Kids

Advice & Info #3: Should kids be pushed into activities they’re not interested in?

Posted by on Mar. 22, 2012 at 10:34 AM
  • 82 Replies

I've got a house full of athletic sons who genuinely enjoy and excel at sports. If it turns out the younger ones aren't interested, what should I do?

How hard should I push my son to play sports if he isn't interested?

Do you encourage your kids to participate in activities if they resist? Share your stories, opinions and parenting philosophy below.


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by on Mar. 22, 2012 at 10:34 AM
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Replies (1-10):
jessicasmom1
by on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:36 AM
1 mom liked this

No way! I think children should be interested in what they do or it will lead to boredom.. My DD has to study for schooling I do not have her in sports or extra activity.

mamivon2
by Member on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:39 AM
1 mom liked this

No way..!! My son is cubscouts and soo not inerested in sports.. do I want him to ..yes I would love for him to play sports do I make him? NO

batjmom
by Member on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:41 AM

 What worked for us was allowing the kids to try a variety of extracurricularactivities.  Starting at age 3 and 4 they did some t-ball, craft classes and music lessons.   Each summer we would try different activities from the library, church and preschool.

I don't think pushing them to hard is a good thing but a little push is sometimes needed.   My son had played 2 years of t ball then thought he didn't want to play the next year which was coach pitch.  I still signed him up because I saw how much he enjoyed the previous years.   He is 10 now and baseball is his favorite sport

millerbunch
by on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:42 AM
1 mom liked this

you shouldn't push at all..

as much as i would loved to have seen my oldest daughter stick it out with softball, she didn't.  and that's ok.. i do not want them to be in a sport and play poorly or resent me for pushing them.  they are growing and will either try news things or not.. it doesn't make them any less of who they are..   they could excel in baking, cooking, crafting, singing etc.  you can pay attention to your child and see what they genuinely enjoy!

Mommy4000
by Bronze Member on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:43 AM
1 mom liked this

I ask and say things like, hey this sounds fun would you like to try it. My son was big in sports in elementary, but decided about a year ago that he just has no interest in them anymore. It bothers my husband and he wants to push him or what I feel force him to participate. I just don't feel it's healthy. Why would I want him doing something he's not having fun doing.

Traci_Momof2
by Silver Member on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:43 AM
3 moms liked this

I wouldn't push them at all.  Encouraging them to try something they've never tried before is one thing.  But to push them into something that they know they don't like is a recipe for disaster IMO.  I think it would only create resentment and hard feelings.  I say let each child discover what their own passion is and then encourage them to go for it with that passion, whatever it may be.

1battymom84
by on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:43 AM
1 mom liked this

I dont think you should ever push your child in to sports or activities like that if they are not interested in.    

alyssa1
by Member on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:44 AM
1 mom liked this

No! My daughter is 7 and my son is almost 2,but I will not be pushing them into anything.they want to pick and try a sport then fine but i will not make them or make them do soemthing they do not want to do.

PinkieRed
by on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:47 AM
No! My mom forced me to take swimming lessons as a kid for years, but I never learned how to swim. She also tried to force me to learn how to roller skate, but I never learned.

She treated me like I was an idiot because I wasn't at all athletic, like my older sister. I'm just pretty uncoordinated. It even took me a long time to learn how to ride a bike.

I wasn't a lazy kid, I played outside all the time, and spent all day, every summer at the neighborhood pool with my younger sister. I was just no athlete.

It really damaged my self esteem as a kid to be constantly criticized by my mother for something I simply wasn't, and for constantly being compared to my older sister.

I think it's wrong to force a child to do an activity he or she hates.

Some kids just aren't athletic, and that's perfectly OK. Find what the kid likes, whether art, music, or even just reading, and encourage him or her to participate in that.
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mom22tumblebugs
by Gold Member on Mar. 22, 2012 at 11:49 AM

I ask my kids what activity they would like to try. We do one sport a season. If they like something and want to continue for several seasons, then we do that. At least they have the choice.

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