Getting up and moving about, even for a short amount of time every day is hugely beneficial to all of us, not least children. We are all leading increasingly sedentary lives so it’s time to make a conscious effort to move more, and there are schemes to encourage us to take up some sort of exercise or team sport.
Children and young people often find it easier to fit activity into their regular day, but even so, children can benefit from taking part in official organised exercise. At school, that might include regular PE lessons, as well as football, netball, rugby and hockey.
There are benefits of all sports beyond the obvious physical benefits – discipline and focus from solo sports and teamwork and collaboration from team games.
Hockey is a field sport that many of us will get the chance to take part in, but ice hockey is not as common in the UK. For those who do get the opportunity, it can be a wonderful sport to play. A good field hockey drill like those available from companies like Sport Plan https://www.sportplan.net/drills/Hockey/ can help with ice hockey too.
Make no mistake, ice hockey is a tough, fast game. Beyond the skills of being able to skate, learning to play ice hockey will teach children how to make friends, encourage teamwork and leadership skills, and can boost self-esteem.
We support children in improving their hand-eye coordination from just a few months old, and a game like ice hockey can take that on in leaps and bounds. Children pick things up very easily when they are pre-school age, like sponges absorbing everything – it’s a great time to teach a child another language, or to support increased dexterity, for example, with being able to balance and skate, and to handle the hockey stick. There are programmes for children to build their skills at ice hockey from around age five in towns and cities where there is an ice rink.
The Health Fitness Revolution goes into more detail about the benefits of all sport and activities for children and young people.
As with any sport or activity, the key is that you enjoy doing it. Once it’s no longer fun, stop doing it and try something else instead!