My daughter considers herself to be sporty child. She’s one of those kids who has natural ability and seems to be able to do most things, so I was looking forward to her going to secondary school and having a lot more opportunity to do sport.
At the start of the year, she went to one after-school hockey session, but didn’t enjoy it. She’d never played netball before, but she went to netball club at lunchtime for a few weeks. Sadly the never-playing-netball-before thing held her back a bit, as I always thought it would do. Damn you, primary school!
Understandably, she didn’t make it onto the A team, but she didn’t make it onto the B team either. She thought the teams were set in stone (they weren’t). So she stopped going to netball practise.
She shone in gymnastics in her PE lessons. Her teachers just assumed she was a gymnast.
But she wasn’t doing clubs, or practises or matches, like we’d hoped she would. It felt like she was doing almost as little sport as she’d done at primary school. And that wasn’t what she wanted for herself. That’s not how she sees herself.
I told her she needs to be brave and go to the clubs and the practises and to stick it out if she doesn’t get on the team straightaway. She enjoys netball and now realises she made a mistake in quitting. She’s going to go back in the autumn term.
In the meantime, she’s started going to athletics and rounders clubs. After one rounders session, she made it onto the team for the first rounders match. Her 100 metres time was one of the fastest in the year group. There will be athletics competitions against other schools in the next few weeks.
She’s started coming home in her PE kit and she needs it nearly every day. When my son was in Year 7, he started doing extra sport immediately. It’s taken my daughter a little bit longer to settle into it, but now she’s got the confidence to take part and to stick at it.
The extra sport will be good for her parkrun times – and the faster parkruns will be good for her overall fitness and her school sport.
It’s taken a while, but it’s great to see my daughter getting back into sport.