Ok, so how many of you recognized the quote that I used for my post title? It’s from “Billy Madison” which was one of my FAVORITE movies when I was in high school. My best friend Emily and I used to quote it back and forth to each other incessantly. I’m sure it got really annoying. We didn’t care. To this day, even though I haven’t seen the movie in a few years, I can still quote most of it… and I can’t help but hear the words in the various character’s voices.
So, naturally, when Ian started showing an interest in soccer (seriously, this kid LOVES to kick a ball around), this quote popped into my head. And now whenever I watch him kick his ball, I just think of this and grin. I can’t help it. And inevitably, I think of my friend Emily, whom I miss terribly and wish did not live 10 hours away from me. Thank goodness for social media and cell phones because we’ve been able to keep in touch. But it’s still not the same.
ANYWAY- this post got really off topic! The whole reason I even bring this up is because our little wildman has just joined an 18-24 month soccer “league”. I use the term “league” here loosely because it really is just a bunch of toddlers running around aimlessly on Saturday morning for 45 minutes. Not totally aimlessly, because there is a “coach”, but pretty close.
When we saw that our area offers leagues for kids this age, we laughed. We couldn’t imagine starting a kid in a sport that young. But the more we thought about it and observed Ian while he played, the more we started to believe it might not be such a crazy idea afterall. I mean, it’s really no different than kids doing gymnastics or music class or whatever at that age. And even though he is in daycare M-F full time, it would be nice to expose him to a new set of kids and a new adult authority figure.
So we took the plunge- we signed Ian up for soccer, and this past Saturday was his first day!
He seemed to really like it (once he got over the fact that he had to pay attention and couldn’t just spend the whole time kicking the ball wherever he wanted and whenever he wanted).
The coach was really nice and enthusiastic, and she actually did have a structure to the morning. They started with a warm up- running down the field, then running backwards, then walking sideways, then running again. Then they did some stretching. For the record, Ian was interested in about 0% of these activities (with the exception of the running down the field)…though the next day while we were grocery shopping he was happily doing them ALL as we attempted to make it through the aisles. Finally, she had them do some kicking with the soccer balls… so Ian was in heaven.
Then she had them dribble/carry/put the soccer balls in the goal (this cute little net that was maybe 3 feet tall) and she pulled out a thing of bubbles. Naturally, all the kids went crazy (what is it about kids and bubbles??)- and the coach had to keep reminding them of the rules (no hands; kick or step on the bubbles; use your feet only!). After everyone was bubbled out, there was more fun with the ball. This time each parent built a tower of cones and the kids had to kick the ball into the tower to knock it over. Ian was really good at this! He even helped us put the tower back together after he had knocked it over. Then the coach pulled out big squishy balls and had each kid kick that around for a while. Finally, they put all the balls away and she pulled out a parachute. Another little kid favorite. They played parachute games for a while and ended the practice with hand stamps for everyone.
I’m not entirely sure what I was expecting, but my husband and I enjoyed ourselves, and Ian did, too. So I’d say it was a success!
Does your little one play any sports? What age did they start?