Now excuse me whilst I froth over with enthusiasm and exuberance. And even bossiness.
You see, the sport of cricket has been so very beneficial to my three boys over the years. And I’m very grateful.
So I’m here to tell you parents of little ones that cricket is the best summer sport of ‘em all.
Here’s why cricket is so good for kids and how to get them started.
And it’s not just good for the kids, Paul and I have met wonderful people and learned lots from them too.
Cricket season is underway and the MILO in2CRICKET & MILO T20 Blast, the programs for younger children, start in October.
So here are all the reasons I am trying to persuade my daughter to play cricket this year and why I reckon your kids should too.
1. Cricket gets kids moving
They’re out in the fresh air and they are doing loads of throwing, catching, and running. Kids get all the physical benefits of movement in the great outdoors.
2. Crickets builds friendship and community
My three cricketers say the best thing about cricket is that they get to be with their mates. The camaraderie amongst the children is obvious even from when they start MILO In2CRICKET aged 5.
I can see that the kids love the challenge of the game, they love to see their skills improving. But they say it’s all about being with friends.
And, to be honest, my love of cricket is social too. You meet a terrific people at cricket, we’ve made family friends, and even found a fab builder. You can’t beat that.
3. Cricket builds resilience
From your five year old missing a shot and having another go, to your 12 year old being bowled for a duck. There is pain in cricket, but there’s a team behind the kids to help them recover.
I’ve seen my boys walk off the pitch with tears in their eyes. Dealing with disaster give lessons that last a lifetime.
They have gone on to have a laugh with their mates and get over it. And they’ve showed up again for more.
My two big ones are young men now and the lessons learned over the years have stood them in good stead.
4. Cricket helps with concentration
Even the jumpiest kids can learn to focus fully on that very small, very fast ball. Once they start to bowl and to be wicket keeper, there’s a fierce amount of concentration.
Two of my boys had ADHD and I will swear that their attention improves in the cricket season. I’m sure the focus at cricket helps, and the hours of movement too.
5. Kids need coaches
Significant role models are great for our kids. They learn sportsmanship, cricket skills and restraint from someone who isn’t us.
We have loved our boys having positive role models for adult life and are deeply grateful to their coaches for the hours and hours and hours they put in.
6. Kids need heroes to look up to
My kids love all sorts of sports, but I think that cricket has given them the best role models. There’s courage and dignity out in the field. Cricketers seem to be able to live pretty decent lives off the pitch too.
7. Cricket wears them out
This is one for us parents… I do love an exhausted child… especially once they’ve gone to sleep.
How to Get Started With Cricket
Start your sons and daughters with the junior programs, MILO in2CRICKET & MILO T20 Blast, and within a few years they will have the basics down pat.
Then they can start to play with pads and helmets… but in the initial years, for kids and parents too, there’s an easy start to the game.
The training and then the modified matches don’t take too long at all and leave the kids wanting more.
Play Cricket is Cricket Australia’s website and you can quickly and easily learn about the programs for learners and also how to find your local club.
MILO in2CRICKET is for girls and boys aged 5 to 8. The kids learn the basics of cricket through games, and it’s fun for them with no pressure.
MILO T20 Blast is for boys and girls aged 7 to 12. Everyone gets a chance to bat, bowl and field in a modified game lasting maximum 90 minutes.
Big thanks to all the coaches who’ve helped us bring up our kids, and who are still helping this season.
Are you parents of younger children?
Can I answer any questions about cricket? Do ask in the comments.
And other parents of older kids, how has cricket benefited your family?
Catch you on the pitch,
PS And let us never forget the universality of cricket – we can play it anywhere and with anyone!