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Unsporty 10 year old daughter

52 replies

BlueStargazer · 19/01/2020 13:34

Hi just after some advice. My 10 year old daughter has never been sporty or particularly competitive. She's tried various sports including tennis lessons for a year which she never got to a good standard in (i.e got close in terms of ability to other kids). It put her off completely not being able to keep up. She gave that up in autumn to try netball, which she says she enjoys and the social side of it seems to be a real positive for her. She's in a team of new players so none are great at this stage, but I can already see that they are improving faster than she is and I've noticed a couple of them are getting frustrated with my daughter. She's not great at catching a ball (coordination has never been great) but that has improved slightly. I know she'll never be an amazing sportswoman, which is fine, and we can work on catching. She can be quite dopey and doesn't seem to be able to keep her concentration and focus on the game. She's been playing netball 3 months. I'm just worried that the others will keep improving at a faster rate and the gap will widen. Just looking for any similar experiences which might help me guide her.

OP posts:
malificent7 · 19/01/2020 14:34

Not everyone is into sport and that's fine. It isn't the be all and end all. I hated competwtive sports as was clumsy but as i got olderi grew to love hiking, swimming etc and spent lots if time outdoors.
Exercise is more important so just go for lots of walks. Prob not what you want to hear but you can't force a love of team games.

malificent7 · 19/01/2020 14:35


MadamePewter · 19/01/2020 14:44

She could practise throwing and catching even against a wall at home if she enjoys it.

But competitive sports aren’t for everyone. She could do swimming, running, yoga, horse riding, and gym type classes?

But at ten I’d hope her team mates might not mind if she’s not the best if they’re all having fun.,?

MadamePewter · 19/01/2020 14:45

Or some type of martial art ?

BlueStargazer · 19/01/2020 14:47

Thanks all. Yes I agree competitive sports probably not for her. It's just a shame as she says she really enjoys it and tbh I really think the social side would be good for her -she's already meeting new friends. I will give it a while longer and see how she gets on. I guess I was just hoping someone would say they/their daughter was the same and it suddenly clicked! She is very active, a good swimmer. Walks a lot etc. She's bookish x

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SpruceTree · 19/01/2020 14:49

Dancing. It's done in classes with lots of children plenty of whom have 2 left feet. There will be a variety of abilities within each class.
Plus it's inside in the warm and you can sit dune and drink a coffee whilst she dances!

Foghead · 19/01/2020 14:52

Try things she can do as an individual rather than a team and that maybe doesn’t involve a ball?
Things like dance, martial arts and swimming.
My non sporty dn is doing really well at kickboxing and loves cycling.

BlueStargazer · 19/01/2020 14:54

Thanks for the martial arts and dancing recommendations. Martial arts maybe an option if and when the netball fizzles out,
unfortunately she has an aversion to dancing. She does a drama class which I had to search out because it doesn't include singing or dancing because she's a dance refuser! When they do sings at school etc that require hand movements/dance moves, she's a couple if seconds behind everyone else and she believes she hears things /processes slightly later than everyone else. Probably related to being bad at catching. But she's good at lots of things so we will focus on those!

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AgeLikeWine · 19/01/2020 15:00

Tennis is a really difficult sport. Hitting a fast-moving ball so it goes over the net and bounces inside the lines requires excellent hand-eye co-ordination. Anyone who isn’t naturally sporty would struggle.

I would suggest she tries something which doesn’t involve a ball. Dance? Swimming? Cycling?

Rockbird · 19/01/2020 15:05

Mine is 12 and the least sporty person on the planet, detests PE, won't even watch sport on tv! However, she loves her Irish dance. It's the only thing that gets her moving.

BlueStargazer · 19/01/2020 15:08

Irish dance could be good- she is just about to get an Irish passport as well Grin

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Frouby · 19/01/2020 15:16

My dd was the same.

Last summer we joined out local watersports centre and she hasn't looked back. She is 16 in the summer. We have always had ponies and she was never going to be a keen rider. Wasn't interested in team sports at school. Did a bit of dancing when she was 7/8 but that fizzled out.

But she loves watersports. Is on the dragonboat team, does kayaking and kayal polo, was learning canoes yesterday, dragonboat training today and was down 4 or 5 times a week last year. Shes tried windsurfing as well and SUP boarding. And slalom.

I would never have dreamed she would be so passionate and involved with anything sporty but something has really clicked for her on this. Maybe try and book something different for your dd to try? Kayaking is pretty accessible these days. Maybe climbing walls? Or skating. Or a mountain bike club. You just have to find something they enjoy and our watersports centre is very social as well which helps. She's made some fantastic friends of all ages and really thrown herself into the team sports there.

HeidioftheAlps · 19/01/2020 15:19

Dd wasn't good at ball games (it runs in the family) She went to a non competitive swimming club for 10 years which she enjoyed

BlueStargazer · 19/01/2020 15:51

Great thanks so much for the replies. She does swim and maybe a club is an option. And she had always really loved water sports on holiday. I think I'll look into a water sports club. X

OP posts:
GetUpAgain · 19/01/2020 15:55

I was going to say martial arts - it's good because it's done in a group but it's still individual, so it's sociable but without pressure of letting the team down.

Also, my DD really enjoyed sailing.

Veterinari · 19/01/2020 15:59

Martial arts, climbing and parkour are all social, non-competitive and help to build coordination.
Otherwise what about drama or performing arts?

Popsdob · 19/01/2020 16:09

Park run ?

MartyrGuacamole · 19/01/2020 16:20

If she's enjoying netball then maybe practise that with her? Could she get a hoop in the garden, practise bounce passes against the wall, play catch with you? My dd likes to read non fiction books about things before she really gets into them, could you find her a coaching book about netball aimed at her age? It's a shame that she's been advised by pp that at 10 she should move on from something she enjoys because she's not progressing as quickly. Hand eye coordination can be hard for tweens who are growing rapidly, it's possible she will improve!

BlueStargazer · 19/01/2020 16:31

Thanks all - some really great ideas. Thanks Martyr - we've got a hoop. I will encourage her to get out there a big more. Just not been great weather for it - it's over grass which has gone muddy- will try to move the hoop. Will also try a book before we give up. She really does want to carry on. I'm going to go with extra practice sessions first and then if that fails look at something else, probable a water sports or swimming club first. Thanks all x

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TeenPlusTwenties · 19/01/2020 16:45

My DD1 with dyspraxia loved ice skating (until she injured her back at work). DD2 (also poor motor skills) enjoys it too.

Lordfrontpaw · 19/01/2020 16:49

I wasn’t particularly sporty as a child (ran and threw javelin at secondary school) but just felt awkward and rubbish in team sports and would be hopeless as I felt embarrassed (I was very shy and the opposite of competitive).

As an adult I discovered karate and really enjoyed that.

BadEyeBri · 19/01/2020 16:56

Horse riding. Can be competitive or not. Great social scene for kids. Also helps them take responsibility and appreciate animals and the care they need

FernBritanica · 19/01/2020 17:01

How about hill walking/camping (guides, E of E etc). Good exercise and no coordination required Smile

FernBritanica · 19/01/2020 17:01

D of E

Floralnomad · 19/01/2020 17:03

I also recommend horse riding , if you find a stables with a pony club centre or their own equivalent type thing it can be great socially as well .

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