Why “Youth Curling Development” and “Optimists – Bringing out the Best in Children” is such a perfect fit.
- In curling, a child does not need to be bigger, faster or stronger to grow from playground to podium.
- Children dream. Count the interviews where Olympians said their dream began when they were 10 years old. The Olympics! Imagine. A 10-year old sure can.
- In curling, 100% of the time, for every play, each player, puts in their equal share of the team effort.
- Affiliation is a life need, a need for life, a life skill and a skill for life. Curling is an opportunity to join. Want to join a gang? Join our gang. Join when you’re in 5thgrade.
- Curling is inclusive, providing the bully with a venue in which to learn leadership and providing the victims with a safe environment in which to thrive. Each child is on the team. This is extremely important, even pivotal, to a child of this age. Everyone plays from start to finish, in every game, and in every Optimist competition.
- An active lifestyle, beginning age 0 to 6, is fundamental to healthy childhood development. Fundamental Movement Skills (FMS) are essential to overall physical literacy and development of children and youth.
- A child’s active start can prevent childhood diabetes associated with the 9-year old couch potato. Vigorous exercise in pre-pubescence is reported to aid in prevention of breast cancer. For optimum physical development, fast twitch muscles are best trained at age 9-11 for explosive strength used in curling for brushing reaction and leg thrust. This protocol provides the child with valuable cross-training for many other sports.
- Going on road trips seem to be our best memories of youth development and competition, even when the road trip was only 30 minutes to the next town.
- Children like competition so we work to get them into the league with their peers right at the beginning of their first year. After all, a curling game is a competition.
- My friend, Greg, chides, “Al, you think junior curling is the answer to world peace.” I answer, “Yes”.
2011 June 28
Al Kersey – Optimist Junior Interclub Curling League
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