We're always being told that getting into sport at a young age but what do you choose? And what are the benefits? The answer could be Playball, a class which brings together all ball sports and from as young as 2 and all the way to 8. Here Joanne Forrest-Smith tells us of the benefits to be gained other than a good nights sleep for you and your toddler!

A toddler is still discovering the wonderful things their body can do and needs lots of exposure to the basic building blocks of locomotion, stability, manipulation and spatial awareness.

Through exploration and movement toddlers learn to move freely and develop fine and gross motor skills.

Young children learn through play and imitation so joining a multi sport and movement class with other toddlers help them improve their core strength, coordination and balance. Playball classes teach Foundation Phase sport skills for tennis, football, rugby, hockey, basketball, netball and baseball such as hitting, catching, throwing, dribbling and bouncing balls, balancing and running. These are just some of the skills your child will learn on the “I Can Do” program for 2-3 year olds.

The “I Can Do” program delivers small, age-specific and structured classes focusing on motor planning, core strength, stability, locomotion & manipulation. Toddlers have fun discovering and doing in our active & exciting lessons.

For pre-schoolers the benefits of Playball help develop hand-eye coordination, flexibility and strength as well as learning many different sport skills.

Young children have a natural curiosity about their environment and as they grow older begin socialising with their peers, gaining confidence and independence. Physical activity enables concentration and listening skills, learning to share and work as part of a team. All essential skills in preparation for school.

The “Watch me Play” program for 3-4 year olds progresses onto skill development, confidence & teamwork. The development of competence in basic sport skill is prioritised as is social integration with other children by participating in a group environment. Exposure to lots of different sport at an early age helps determine whether your child will chose a particular sport when they are older.

For school aged children, learning to cope with winning and losing, perseverance and decision making are all essential emotional, social and cognitive skills preparing them for the wider world.

The “Dinkies” program for 4-5 year olds provides competence in sport through positioning and timing and the confidence to participate. Decision making, teamwork and dealing with winning & losing are vital elements that prepare your child for school and the wider world.

The “Preps” program for 5-8 year olds refines the skill components of the popular sports taught at school by experiencing mini matches.

Playball coaches offer a holistic approach to teaching your child’s cognitive, physical, social & emotional development. All coaches are DBS and first aid trained and undergo continual training twice yearly. Our coaches are passionate about teaching children and our classes are in safe and secure environments.

Children who engage in sport from an early age tend to have a positive self image as sport encourages the desire to want to succeed, team work, decision making and good sportsmanship. The continuous scientific study behind Playball shows that the type of activities the children take part in accelerate the neural pathways between the brain and body. This has a marked impact on how well children perform cognitively, socially, emotionally and physically at school. What better reason to get active!