How to Encourage a Child Who Is Showing Promise as an Athlete – While Still Keeping Them Engaged in Their Studies

Sport is great for kids. It keeps them fit and healthy, gets them involved in social groups, and gives them a good balance between moving their bodies and using their brains during their school years. Being into sport can also help a child set themselves up with lifelong passions that will help keep them in shape in adult life, and enrich their future social lives.

While this is the case for all kids, some show unusual talent for athletic pursuits at a young age. If you, or your child’s coaches, have noticed that your child seems to be exceptional at a sport, then there is a possibility that they may even be able to do it professionally someday, or at the very least stand a chance of getting a sports scholarship when it is time for college through programs like


  • Teaching Them Balance


Of course, while they may be talented, and you certainly want to encourage them, professional athletics can be partly about luck. While you encourage them to train and pursue their sporting dreams, you also want to make sure that they know they shouldn’t bank on an athletic career and shouldn’t let their academic learning fall by the wayside in favor of more sports practice.

After all, an injury in their teens could put an end to their sporting dreams, or they may simply not fulfil the potential they showed at a young age once their body changes during puberty. They may also find that when they head to college that the competition is tougher than they are used to at school level, and they don’t even really want to pursue a sports career any more.


  • Talk to Them About Other Career Paths They Can Get Excited About, Too


As well as encouraging and supporting your child in their sport, it can be good to encourage other interests and talk about possible jobs they might like in those fields too. If they love computers and technology, this could be something to encourage their interest in as much as sport.

Perhaps they have shown an interest in making things, or cooking, or travel, or they love animals. Make sure they know that sport doesn’t have to be their only passion, and they are thinking about all the possible ways they could end up doing something they love in the future rather than being blinkered about sport.


  • Keep Them Grounded


Being the best at a sport in school can make a kid feel special, but so can getting the best grades or making the most improvement in a class. Your child is likely to already feel competitive due to their experiences in sport, and encouraging them to channel this into other things while remaining grounded – that is, knowing that achievements come with hard work rather than being something they are simply entitled to – can be a good way to motivate them to aim for those ‘special’ feelings outside of sport.

By keeping your child engaged and motivated at school as well as in sport, they will be set up to be happy in whatever they end up doing.

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