Age 5-6 years

At five years old, a child has a better sense of balance, and by six they will have acquired the large motor skills. Children this age may be more enthusiastic about activities that require greater coordination, such as roller-blading.

At this stage the children are ready to learn about the basic rules and soccer-related terminology should be used, remember to say it as it is said in the real game.

What a five to six-year-old can do

  • Although they move with better balance and control, in most cases, still no developed eye-foot coordination
  • Early developers will start to shine at this stage. To prevent intimidation of others within the group, these players should move up to an older age group
  • Have a preference for using the left or right hand/foot

How you can help

  • Sport provides us with a unique opportunity to positively influence and develop a variety of skills within the child – if done in the correct manner. A negative sporting experience could put a young child off playing sport indefinitely - so remember to make it a positive, challenging and memorable experience for them. They should not ever feel pressurised to achieve but rather motivated to give it their best shot.
  • Improve balance – practice hopping and skipping
  • Boost confidence – it is important to ensure a balance between learning and fun so that the child learns in a pleasant atmosphere. So, from time to time, let the child do things well within his/her capability

For younger children, it is recommended that they participate in a general but structured ball skills programme where they are exposed to a variety of sporting skills. Once children have tried and become more proficient at the basic sports skills, they naturally develop an affinity for one sport or another. It is at this stage where they can start attending specific sport sessions.

For more ideas or information on a structured sports programme for young children aged 3- 9 years please contact Anne from PLAYBALL at 021 674 1265 or 083 270 4094 or explore www.usaplayball.com

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