What are alternative sports and how can they benefit teens?
*Note* The five alternative sports highlighted in this brochure are only some of the opportunities that exist. If these are not the best fit for you or your teen, continue to explore and try new things!
This brochure was prepared with the help of Andie Stallman, a graduate student at Tufts University’s Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development who concentrated on Clinical and Developmental Health and Psychology. A former collegiate athlete on the Tufts University Field Hockey team, Andie is passionate about finding ways to make sports and exercise more accessible, so that everyone can enjoy the numerous benefits of physical activity. Andie is particularly interested in developmental psychopathology, sibling relationships, and experiences of trauma. She plans to pursue a Ph.D. in clinical psychology to help children and families develop skills that will enable them to confidently navigate life’s hardships and achieve their individual goals.
“I’ve tried to get my child to play soccer like I did when I was a kid, but she always stands at the end of the bench and doesn’t talk to anyone. Where can I find a sport where she’ll feel comfortable?
“After my kid comes home from school, he is exhausted and drained. All he wants to do is play video games. How can I get him moving?”
Many of us have been affected by the current events in Ukraine. As adults, we not only have to process these events ourselves but simultaneously figure out how to talk about it with the children in our lives. Children who have been directly affected by war will need psychological support far beyond the scope of this article. We wanted to focus on how to talk to children who have been exposed to war second-hand, for example via news, social media, family or peer connections.
In this situation, the first thing to remember is that kids are resilient. Most children who are exposed to war second-hand will be able to process this information without significant negative emotional impact. Having said that, when talking to children about a topic as difficult as war, adults should consider the child’s individual characteristics. In this article, we will examine how children understand the concept of war and discuss what to consider when talking to children about this difficult topic.