He isn't an athelete--now he wants to play football!?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Chaosuncontained, Sep 23, 2011.

  1. Chaosuncontained

    Chaosuncontained New Member

    Carson (9) has recently been diagnosis with depression (along with ADHD and Severe Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)). His new anti depressant has been a WONDER drug. He has had SIX good days at school in a ROW! Now that he is feeling better about himself he is actually playing "football" on the playground. If only you knew what a big deal this is. He has NEVER been physical. He can't run well. He has never played a team sport (well, we tried a few, unsucessfully). Now he is running on the playground, laughing and attempting football with the other boys.

    Yesterday he told me he wants to play football. He will not be able to. The league has already started. And even if I could get him in I would be so...scared for him to play. He really is the smallest boy in his class and he has never been athletic. Seriously, if you could see him run you would think of "Run Forrest, Run!" I know that sounds mean but it is soooo true. I would be afraid that he would only be the butt of both team mates and parents jokes.

    I tried to explain to him that football has already started and that maybe next year (but then he will be a 5th grader and so far behind the other football boys). I tried to tempt him with maybe playing basketball...my husband is a HUGE basketball fan and has even coached TWO teams each year for the last three years (his kids teams). But he wasn't intrested--mainly, I think, because it's not FOOTBALL.

    Gosh, all this is hard. Guess I just needed to whine.
  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    How awesome that he so quickly has been able to join his peers. I'm really happy for him and for you and your husband. Phew/Whew that football signup time has passed!!

    Meanwhile, as the Mama of a former jock, I have to input that basketball involves alot of running up and down the court or around half court and getting a hoop is darn hard for shorter boys. Soccer also involves alot of running up and down the field. With a "Forrest" gait (unless he is naturally gifted with better than average speed) he is apt to experience ridicule. Playing at school is terrific because teachers, hopefully, oversee inappropriate comments.

    On a more positive note if he is "ready" to be integrated into a peer group you might consider bowling as an option. Over the past ten years plus in the CD family a number of parents have found bowling a great way to develop socialization skills, most communities have age appropriate teams, many are affiliated with National groups which leads to trophies & team spirit...plus it is a sport that can be enjoyed with a Dad or Mom at other times during the week.

    He's made such progress already that just perhaps he may be able to branch off into other sports later. Maybe even "football". Capturing his interest in team activity at this age is in my humble opinion a wonderful goal. Hugs. DDD
  3. Methuselah

    Methuselah New Member

    Hi. Glad to hear his medications are working well. Tackle football is hard for any mom to deal with! The first time you hear the crunch of helmets and pads can catch your breath. :)

    You can always start him out with flag football, which doesn't involve physical contact. Some areas form late fall/winter leagues. The YMCA would be the first place I would check. Screamo started football via flag football, played tackle for five years, and is now playing flag football again.
  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Its always a tough trade-off between capability and desire.

    For kids who are "clumsy" or "awkward"... full-out team-on-team sports are the absolute hardest. You have to keep track of the ball, your team members, the other team, the speed of play, and so on. Really, really hard.

    Easier - but not with the glitz and glory...
    - Volleyball - team sport, but the other team has to stay on their own side... so, you only have to watch for your own team members
    - tennis, badminton... more individual, "team = 2", same advantages as volleyball
    - wrestling - this one has the advantage of being "weight" based rather than "age" based...
    - martial arts
    - track and field - if he can get coaching on his running skills, you might be surprised at what is possible.
    - swimming

    Start exposing him to the options and opportunities, and see where it goes.

    Meanwhile, he loves football. So... you could try talking to the coach. Explain that this kid has some physical "issues" (awkward/clumsy, hasn't had a chance to develop sports skills yet)... would they take him on as, say, an assistant equipment manager? or waterboy? and then, allow him to practice with the team, but he doesn't actually play on the field for "real games". Might give him some inclusion, and a chance to learn or try out the skills...
  5. Chaosuncontained

    Chaosuncontained New Member

    Methuselah, LOL I guess it's not so much the "roughness" of the game. But more that he isn't atheletic and the fear that he would be made fun of. His self esteem is so fragile. Well, most kids this age have fragile self esteem--but his is a little more sensitive than most. I am so happy he is playing with peers and RUNNING...outside!!! and laughing with kids his own age (he has ZERO freinds--NONE). He has never been invited to a peers Birthday party or to a sleep over.

    DDD I really wanna squeeze and squeeze you until you are the size of a Lego person...and then put you in my pocket and carry you around with me everywhere. I really DO think that playing on the playground "sports" with his peers is the best thing. The bowling thing sounds good--but I'm pretty sure we fon't have anything like that anywhere near us. We live in the smallest town, we even share a school district with another small town, both towns together don't even make 1,000 population. Yeah, the sticks. But I COULD maybe take him to a town over an hour away on a weekend and take him bowling with *me*!!

    Thanks ladies!
  6. Chaosuncontained

    Chaosuncontained New Member


    You're another one I wanna put in my pocket. Very good ideas. I'm going to talk to him about martial arts when I pick him up from school today!! Why didn't I think of that?
  7. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    If he is that small...try baseball. All my kids played 3 sports a year...football, basketball and baseball from the age of 6 till they aged out of rec sports. Little wont matter in baseball. It also gives you all winter to work with him on catching a ball and hitting a ball. He has the running down now...lol. I am a firm believer in team sports helping kids. Just my opinion.
  8. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    At his age, it seems to be that there should be various options for playing football without all the physical and/or extreme competitiveness.

    Check out community centers, neighborhood groups, someone already suggested the Y. If he's having fun - go with it. That's what teams should be stressing at his age anyway - the FUN.
  9. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    :twister2:Gee, my head is spinning. NOBODY has offered to carry me around in their pocket before.
    How cool is that? Thanks. DDD
  10. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    No, If he wants footaball, try to see if it's not too late. Please, NONE of those kids are going to play in the NFL, it's ok if he's not the best. It is so much fun for any kid, please do let him do it.
  11. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Miss KT earned her first degree black belt in karate; earning the belts along the way was really the first time she had been successful at something. You could tell Carson that karate will help condition him for team sports; it was a great help for Miss KT to learn to control her movements and follow instructions. Do speak to the sensei before enrolling him, and make sure his philosophy agrees with yours. I certainly didn't want a street fighter, so I decided against several schools in our area. The sensei where Miss KT trained emphasized the control and the skill of the sport.
  12. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I agree with letting him play football if you can find anyway to get him onto any sort of team. UAN is right that the chances of any of the kids playing with him being the next Payton Manning are probably slim to none...lol. Though actually several of the kids that played with my kids went on to play in the ACC.
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    First of all, being practical here, I've taken tons of medications, some that started out working great and ended up being duds or even causing serious side effects. On the wave of his new medication, until you have seen three good months, I wouldn't have him make any rash decisions. Anti-depressants can make everyone a touch manic at first, which makes you feel great and rather invincible, but that affect rarely lasts. I know from experience. Usually it settles down and you see the true effect of the medication closer to six weeks down the road than at the onset.

    Secondly, if he isn't that athletic, there are some good sports that work even for non-athletic kids, but in my opinion football isn't one of them. It's highly competitive and even dangerous...if the child is not in top shape, it could cause trouble, like a concussion or two. It's also VERY competitive. Some sports I recommend are bowling, swimming competition, track and field (swimming and track...you compete against your own time, nobody else's)...singular sports where other boys aren't trying to trip you up or yell at you if you mess up. My son has become an EXCELLENT bowler and he loves bowling. He is on a team.

    Please don't expect this fast reaction to the medications to remain...I just hate to have you disappointed. If it happens, enjoy it (in fact, enjoy every single good day), but don't be too disappointed if it lags after a while because that's often what medications usually do.

    Good luck and, whatever you do, keep us posted! We're on your side and that of your son!
  14. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Absolutely be careful about the choice of sensei. Karate in different forms can be a big problem for some kids. been there done that. GFGmom signed difficult child#2 up and then...surprise...I was the one who had to transport and attend the programs. His sensei was very very rigid and didn't seem to get the differences in children. Conversely I subsequently learned that there was another sensei who was very compassionate etc. Just be careful. DDD
  15. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    mwm....football isnt always competitive and having concussions at the 4th or 5th grade level. At that age its about having fun. Now if you are on high school, college or NFL teams...well, yeah, you are gonna be competitive.
  16. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Dunno, Janet...lol. My DAUGHTER, yes JUMPER, played football in sixth grade. Yes, she made the team. She didn't play much of course...lol. And, although it was supposed to be about having fun, the boys REALLY wanted to win and were rather mean to the poorer athletes. So I guess it depends on which league you are in :)
    Although of course younger kids get hurt less, I used to cringe, thinking of concussions so maybe I"m projecting!
  17. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Our district has tackle football starting in the fifth grade. I worry about those kids, too.
  18. Chaosuncontained

    Chaosuncontained New Member

    Yall are just so awesome!!

    MidwestMom, thank you for the advice. What you said makes so much sense...about waiting to see if this is just a honeymoon phase of the medications. I DO need to wait a bit and not make any rash decisions.

    Upallnight, he likes football but I wonder is it's just "playground" football--which looks like he stands around alot LOL-- that he is enamoured of. "REAL" football may be more than he's willing to do (he knows NOTHING of football).

    KTMom, he really seemed interested in karate when I brought it up. There is a school in a town about 20 minutes from here and my sister lives there. She has heard GREAT things about this guy...so in a week or two, if he's still thinking about trying it I will give them a call.

    You've all been so nice. I have really enjoyed reading all your comments.
  19. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I wouldn't worry about him being behind the other boys if he doesn't join until future years. husband and I have a friend who played college football and his son does not and will not play youth football. Friend said that youth football is unnecessary for future play as 95% of being successful in football is size, strength and speed, most of which is genetic. Many boys do well joining football AFTER their pubescent growth spurt even with zero youth football experience.

    There isn't anything wrong with playing youth football if it is an enjoyable experience for the child but it isn't necessary to start as a small child.