• Luke Towning

How to build child resilience

It is a like a tiny dagger to heart when it happens.

We read the email then let out a big sigh.

See, we’re at the time of year when it’s colder and it is around this time when we get emails that read something like…

‘It is getting a bit too cold now so we will cancel and come back in the Spring’.

This is the part where a ‘slapping head in frustration emoji’ should be inserted!

The reason it frustrates us is that some parents don’t realise the harm they are doing by limiting the time their child has outdoors.

Is it them or is it you?

When children run around they are warm within seconds.

Mum & Dad spent ages getting them wrapped up then all of a sudden we’re left with coats, hats and gloves to carry around because our child is too warm after running for all of 30 seconds!

Sure, it can take some encouragement to get them out in the cold but, in our experience, they are fine as soon as we start them moving…and we have kids as young as 4 years old training with us all year-round.

So, is it the parents who secretly want the comfort of a warm house instead of stood at the side of a pitch freezing to death?!

Our question is, what sort of example is being set by letting the cold weather rule decision-making?

We’d all probably agree that we want our children to grow up to be successful in whatever they do.

But why should they bother getting up and walking for the school bus on a cold day if Mum & Dad said it was too cold for football on Saturday?

Or, when they are older, they probably shouldn’t bother with that job interview…it’s a bit chilly today.

Seems extreme but the habits they develop now will be hard to shake when they grow up.

Getting out of comfort zones is the key to success

The kids who excel are the kids who get out of their comfort zones.

This is true for sport, school or anything else they do.

Dealing with the cold weather is an easy way to get out of a comfort zone, develop some resilience and help them in so many ways.

It is little wonder that we see huge gap in ability/resilience with the kids who train outside all year-round and those who only train outside in the warmer months.

Resilience is a fundamental skill to develop at a young age.

The more our children are exposed to ‘uncomfortable’ things – like cold weather, harder maths questions, speaking in front of the whole class – the more they become comfortable with them.

That is how resilience is built.

Health benefits

Playing outside is also proven to help the physical and mental well-being of our children.

Winter means the time they have outside is limited so we need to do what we can to maximise their time outdoors being physically active.

Getting fresh air and some vitamin D is great for us adults let alone our little ones.

So wrap up, get the flask out and do your best to keep your toes from falling off!

Winter…let’s smash it!

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