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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Football Lessons 1 - Time-Management, Balancing and Prioritizing!

Aly is the one in the middle adjusting his mouthguard.

Gorgeous brown legs in the middle is my Aly.
 Aly learned to take responsibility for himself when he started playing football. His school day started at 6 a.m. when his alarm went off. During football season, he attended school till 3:15 p.m. and then went straight to football practice. In soaring 90 degree weather, fully dressed with shoulder pads, helmet, mouthguard etc, Aly worked out and sweated like a dog with his team mates. Slowly but surely, he learned the game of football and grew to enjoy exercise. Aly had his share of baby fat which started to melt away. Puberty certainly helped him grow taller and slimmer over the past few years. It was usually past 7 p.m. by the time Aly made it home after practice. He'd shower, eat dinner, do homework and head to bed by 9:30 p.m. The next morning, he did it all over again.

I've learned that any team sports, be it football, baseball or soccer, teaches the player how to efficiently use their time and energy. They learn time management skills so that they can juggle schoolwork and sports.  They learn that there are consequences for not keeping up with their grades since school team sports require student athlete to maintain a certain GPA in order to be able to play on the team. Therefore, the students learn to prioritize school work and practices over socializing with their friends on Facebook, video-conferencing, talking on the phone or hanging out in person. There simply aren't enough hours in a day or a week for the child to get into trouble.

I would strongly recommend that parents encourage their children to play team sports. I realize that it can be burdensome for parents to have to arrange for rides after practices and games but the benefits are sooooooo worth the sacrifices that we must make in the short run. Playing sports facilitates the forming of positive habits and healthy lifestyles which no other experience in my opinion can replicate. One can certainly read a book about positive habits and healthy lifestyles but it's one thing to read about it and another entirely to actually live and learn it.

From one Sufi to another,
Love and Light,

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