Every four years one of the most inspirational sporting events appears on televisions worldwide - the Olympic Games. Millions of children around the globe will be watching the athletes standing proudly behind their country’s flag - encouraging them to think of their own hopes and dreams.
You never know who could be the next big athlete - your class could be full of Usain Bolts and Kelly Holmes. Anything can happen in the future and it’s important to support children in their aspirations and give them the best chances and opportunities. Here are just a few of the almost countless benefits of the Olympics for kids…
A recent study of 700 children discovered that 52% of boys and 55% of girls aged 8 to 12 felt inspired to be more active after watching the Olympics. This comes with many obvious benefits such as more energy, a fitter lifestyle and generally happier children!
Amazing Role Models
The Olympics is full of ambitious, hard-working people - meaning they can make wonderful role models for children. Jessica Ennis is among one of the top athletes children look up to - she won gold at the 2012 Olympics for the women’s heptathlon and a postbox was painted gold in her hometown of Sheffield to celebrate. Athletes are amazing role models because they encourage healthy eating, keeping fit and determination - something you can’t really learn from reality TV stars.
As mentioned above, the Olympics is packed full of incredible role models following some very good habits. Children learn by mimicking, so encouraging them to follow the Olympics can lead to healthy habits such as regular exercise, a balanced diet, good sportsmanship and even perseverance. After all, athletes worked extremely hard to get where they are today.
Teamwork is a fantastic tool to teach children how to work together, play fairly, share and look after one another. Being part of a team can actually increase the flow of endorphins as it feels good to be part of something. It’s also a major player in helping children develop social skills and even leadership skills.
Nobody likes a bad winner or a bad loser - that’s why it’s essential to teach good sportsmanship and competitiveness at a young age. Healthy competition is a great way to teach children about having drive and ambition, while remaining considerate to other participants in sport. You don’t see athletes gloating on the pedestal, neither do you see them angry or upset that they didn’t get a medal. Everyone is just happy to take part in such a brilliant global event.
We’re so excited for the 2016 Olympics - why not let us know what your school is up to by tweeting us at @PlayforceUK with the hashtag #myschoololympics!
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