Hockey is an exhilarating sport. Whether you’re watching or playing, there’s something about some action on the ice that gets people excited. Sports are a great extracurricular activity for kids and teens, but how do you know the best age for your child to start? Many sports offer leagues for children as young as toddlers. Is hockey the same, or do you need to wait a bit to avoid putting your son or daughter at risk? In this article, we’ll talk about some things to take consideration when deciding the best age to start hockey for your child.
Every Child is an Individual
There’s no hard and fast rule for the best age to start hockey that applies to everyone. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy, and you’ll have to consider a variety of factors specific to your kid before signing them up for a hockey league. Leagues are available for most any age, so consider each category in this list before making a decision one way or another.
Consider Your Child’s Growth
If your child is small and tends to get injured, you may want to wait a few years before having them start the sport. Hockey for young children isn’t violent, but there are always risks when skating on hard ice.
Another aspect to consider that ties in with this category is the expense of hockey gear. The price to get a child outfitted with the proper gear and equipment is several hundred dollars at a minimum. If your kid is in the midst of a huge growth spurt, the equipment you buy may not last for long. Young kids grow very quickly, so waiting a bit may save you money in the long run.
Make Sure Your Kid is Ready and Willing
This may seem obvious, but it’s worth a mention considering how obsessed some parents get about pushing their children towards sports achievements. Does your child want to play hockey, or do you want your child to play hockey?
It’s important for kids to have some extracurricular activities to be a well-rounded person and keep busy, but try to let them guide you towards what they’re interesting it. Forcing it will never work long term.
Give it a Try
If you can find used gear and your child is interested, why not give your child the chance to try? As long as they’re signed up for an appropriate age range and they have the protective gear, there’s very little chance that your son or daughter will be seriously injured.
There’s no hard and fast rule to determine the best age to start hockey, but if you take these guidelines into consideration and test the waters, you’ll find out very quickly whether hockey is the right choice at your child’s current stage in life.