4 Reasons To Get Your Kids Surfing
There is no greater value than giving your kids a chance to really enjoy life and to provide them with balance in this very digitalised world. Showing them that it’s what you do that should make you happy, not what happens around you. To take responsibility for your own life, choose to live happy and not to concentrate on fictional problems created by others. Show them how much stoke you can get from hanging outside, enjoying the sea and teach them how to respect the elements. The gains?
1. They learn to fail
There’s something fundamentally wrong with how we are shaping our kids perception of the world. The one where are no winners and losers. Where everyone gets a medal and where “taking part counts”. When and where on earth will our kids will learn how to deal with failure? It really pisses me off that suddenly we have all started living in the “life is not a competition mantra”. Yeah, right, apart from jobs, education, money, status, partners… should I go on?
One of the greatest parts of life is failing. And then trying again. And failing better. Until you have it nailed down. Not giving it a go once and ticking it off your list. Because “it’s participation that counts”. Nope, nailing it that counts. Participation is for cowards. It works for those who will always blame others for their shortcomings. Learn to fail, learn from failures and carry on. No matter how good you get in something, there always will be a “bigger fish”, a challenge, wave or storm that will knock you down. That’s cool. Lick wounds. Get up and try again. Figure out what you’re good at and keep at it and don’t be afraid to get knocked down from time to time.
2. They will make better decisions
There’s nothing worse than adults who can’t make up their mind. “I don’t know, maybe let’s all decide what to do”. It’s bad enough if you have to work with someone like this. It’s even worse if someone like that gets promoted and is in charge of you. God. Evaluate, man up, decide.
Weather you’re on the water, a slope or riding down the mountain – you really need to think fast or suffer the consequences. Thinking on your feet and taking responsibility for your decisions is one of the things you learn really fast on the water. Very often making a snap decision is much better than days of deliberations, overcomplicating simple things and arriving at nothing. “Let’s settle for X”. Don’t settle, decide, follow your gut and follow it through. If it fails? Learn from it and carry on. There’s a lot of talk about the agile methodology when delivering projects. Yet, very few people actually lives by this.
3. The Image
You might think that I’m full of it but I fully agree with SurferDad.co.uk on this. It’s not a mark of our times that kids tend to be cruel. Bullying isn’t an invention of XXI century. It has been in schools when we were kids and, boy, actually since the dawn of time we were excellent at making our lives miserable. People very often are a bunch of arseholes. And it’s absolute paramount to teach our children to be respectful and kind to others. To treat everyone as they’d like to be treated. And to take no shit from anyone either. No, really, none of that other cheek bullcrap.
I also strongly believe that also our role as parents is to try and not to make their school life any harder. You might think that this old sweater knitted by their granny is cute but in reality it is pretty crap. Telling your kid that he shouldn’t worry about what others think is such a total hypocrisy. Try turning up for a job interview in your reindeer sweatty and see what happens. Plus, with the world of social media the pressure on kids nowadays is so much higher than when we were their age. Our surfing culture has its own style that works for most casual scenarios. Combined with the fact that your kid is actually surfing will nicely boost his confidence. You think it’s shallow? Try walking in your child’s shoes for a day.
4. It will keep them healthy
I know it’s a no-brainer. Doing any kind of sport helps a lot. And being on the water is one of the best ways too boost their long-term health. Not only they are working out while surfing, SUP’ing or kitesurfing but they are also building up their immune system. Living in the UK and surfing the cold waters really helps to keep them resilient to petty illnesses. Not to mention that intense psychical activity boosts the mental capabilities too. What’s not to like? We head out on the water all year long. And if any of us catches anything it’s mainly a one day sniffing event.
Oh, one more thing – your surfing sessions just got aligned with childminding shifts! No more excuses not to go out and play!