Thursday, June 2, 2016

Being a bad-a$$ versus just playing around

The other day, D and I took a bike ride through a local park system while the kids were at friends' houses.  While biking, I was thinking about my general fitness level, which isn't fantastic but isn't terrible either.  My motto is "do something rather than nothing," which I think is a good one considering as a person ages she is usually unable to be a fitness queen.

This led me to think about people who are or try to be fitness "bad-asses."  There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, but it is not something I care to do or aspire to be.  I personally think that sucks a lot of the fun out of exercising.  It takes a lot of work to be a bad-a$$.

I then tangent-hopped to my own non-athletic children, especially G who is, of the three, the least physically coordinated.

We encourage our kids to get outside and play in whatever form that takes.  Usually it is frisbee throwing and play-set swinging and, occasionally, it is baseball throwing and hitting with a bat.  We don't focus on correct form much because for G just agreeing to go outside and do anything physical is a huge success.  If we spend too much time and energy correcting him on form, he will become frustrated and stop playing since he doesn't really enjoy doing physical stuff to begin with.

I began to wonder about how kids played baseball or other games when kids used to just go outside and play without parents coaching and instigating the game and schedule.  I guess I thought about A Tree Grows in Brooklyn when Neeley plays baseball with his friends.  Parents were busy working and didn't interfere with how or why or when kids played their pickup games.  Did the kids play with correct form?  Did they hit the ball in exactly the way a professional would?  I doubt it.  They played.  They had fun.

Of course, I'm not suggesting there is no value in learning correct form, but for kids who don't enjoy sports and whose parents are happy for them just to go outside and do something physical, focusing on the form isn't a priority.  Playing on a team isn't a priority.  Winning isn't a priority.  Just doing something rather than nothing is what it's all about.

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