kids playing soccer

There are so many reasons why your child may not want to join in with team sports or exercise at school.  As a parent, you are your child's first and most important teacher, but what do you do if your daughter or son is no longer enjoying their sports or doesn’t want to get involved anymore?


It’s all in the mind

As children get older, the emphasis in sport shifts to a more winner/loser format, which can leave some children behind and create some negative ways of thinking, if not monitored. Some reasons why your kids may not want to get involved in sport may include:

- Feeling they’re not as good as others

- Not having enough fun or being bored

- Being forced to play and not liking the pressure

- Not getting as much playing time to practice as other children

- Fear of failure


Get them back in the game

If your child isn’t enjoying sport anymore, here are some tips to help change their attitude:

- Try to find out what they are thinking and feeling. Your child’s reasons for dropping out might be easy to overcome.

- Change to a new team or sport. Maybe they just want to play another sport or do something else with their time.

- Demonstrate a positive attitude about exercise to your children. What we say can help them develop positive attitudes towards team activities and build confidence in themselves.


This will also lead to the important understanding that exercise is rewarding while realising the benefits of team work and reaching goals. However, if your child really doesn’t like competitive sport, there are lots of other fun ways to stay physically active. Some examples include:

- Bushwalking with family and friends

- Joining the Scouts, Guides or another youth group

-  Bike riding, skateboarding or scooters

- Dancing to their favourite music in the backyard

- Beach activities, like snorkeling or bodyboarding

- Flying a kite or make believe games such as cops and robbers


When parents and families are involved in their children’s fitness, kids feel better about getting involved at school, so having a positive attitude to exercise is vital if you want your child to get the benefits that come with being active throughout their school years.