Respecting the rules in sport: tips and advice for teaching it to your children

12 May, 2023

Respecting the rules in sport: tips and advice for teaching it to your children

By Sarah Baribeau, founder and president of Bougeotte et Placotine

I am a mother of three girls aged 6, 9 and 12 respectively. My husband and I have always introduced them to a lot of activities: canoeing, camping, climbing, tennis, skateboarding, soccer, gymnastics, surfing, mountain hiking, biking, cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, skating and jogging. 'on the way! They have tried everything and it is really a pleasure for us to see them discover new activities. Our goal is to make them versatile and that they are always comfortable and confident in discovering new things.

One essential thing that we wish to teach them through these discoveries is respect for the rules and for each other in each of the activities practiced . Respecting the values ​​of sport as well as the various established rules is essential for having fun and learning!

So I share with you our approach to get there. With three casseroles, let's say that we learned a few little tricks so that each of the activities we practice goes well. Nothing is perfect, but our experiences are generally positive.

On the way to activity

One of our tricks is to discuss the rules and expectations in the car before you arrive . Often, once there, the girls are very excited and just can't wait to get started. Thus, we do not open the doors of the car before the instructions are well understood. We explain to them our expectations, the importance of respecting the rules, of not running everywhere, of respect for one another and of mutual aid . We finally let them know how long we plan to stay.

On arrival at the scene

When we finally arrive on the scene, our girls are aware that they cannot shout, run around and expect to receive even more instructions. We therefore take the time to tour the premises with them to ensure that they understand the rules given.

During the activity

Since each is committed to following the rules, they generally behave well and become ambassadors of good behavior. So, if the older one sees the little one doing something less safe, she won't hesitate to mention it to her, because she understands the importance of following the instructions.

End of activity

We always take the time to review the activity and say what went well, what we are happy with and, if necessary, to name the aspects that we appreciated less in order to improve next time.

Safety and respect for others in play and sports are core values ​​of physical activity. It is in my opinion very important to inculcate these values ​​in a positive way and therefore as little as possible in “consequence and punishment” mode. On our side, taking the time to explain to our children the how and why has always been beneficial, and I am sure that this way of doing things will benefit you too!

Happy next outing!