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As a parent, if you want your child to be healthy and strong as an adult, getting them into some sort of physical activity when they are young is usually a good idea. Although there are many options, basketball is one of the best ways for your kid to stay active.

Apart from helping kids be physically fit, starting basketball young provides valuable life skills that can help them later in life. It can help them develop positive personality traits like teamwork, perseverance, and self-reliance while decreasing their vulnerability to mental health issues.

Kids who start playing basketball at an early age develop qualities and habits that will serve them well both on and off the court.


Considerations Before Playing

Before you get started with teaching your child how to play basketball or enrolling them in a children's basketball league, here are some factors to consider:

Check if Basketball is the Right Sport For Your Child

Not all kids want to play sports or play basketball. However, you can encourage kids to try it out for a while. When doing so, it’s important to remember that kids don’t have the same attention span, patience, or mental capacity as adults. Parents can make a big difference in whether their kid enjoys a sport or not. Creating a fun sports environment can encourage practice and participation, while overly pressuring children could be harmful to their development and mental health.


One study shows that parents can affect how children handle sports-related stress. Offering support, whether they do well or not, can lessen children's stress, but putting pressure on the child to perform well can exacerbate stress. Children also have a tendency to copy their parent’s healthy and unhealthy stress-coping mechanisms.

Likewise, playing basketball yourself will encourage them to play. Your child will be more motivated to play basketball if they see you enjoying yourself doing so. In addition, you may also try:

  • Watching inspiring basketball movies or shows with them

  • Going to basketball games together

  • Playing basketball with them

  • Encouraging them to join the school’s basketball team or class

Best Age to Start Playing Basketball

You should get your kid involved in organized sports after he or she shows interest and demonstrates competence in the sport. Young children benefit most from exploring and participating in a variety of sports rather than being forced to choose just one.

Motor skill development typically begins between the ages of 3 and 5 for most children. Their attention spans, however, will be quite short; therefore, it's ideal to only teach them very basic basketball skills and make it fun without focusing on rules. Joining a basketball camp will help familiarize them with the concept.

As they get older, they’ll be able to understand more complex basketball skills and concepts. Children's cognitive abilities, memory, and ability to grasp game tactics and strategy all peak between the ages of 10 and 12, making it a prime time to try out more complex skills like long passes and lay-up shots.

Safety Concerns

Kids can begin by playing basketball for fun and then join a basketball league when they're ready. Research has shown that early specialization in one sport increases the likelihood of injury and burnout. This is because their muscles and joints are still developing and need time to heal. As such, it’s good to introduce children to other youth sports before making them join a basketball league or specialize in a contact sport like basketball.

All they require is the right direction. While injuries are common in basketball, many are avoidable if players follow the rules, train properly and play in safe environments.

Here are some safety tips to get you started:

Safety Tips

  • Before signing your kid up for any youth sports, it's smart to get a checkup and see what kind of risk he or she poses for injury

  • Make sure your child is using safety gear when training or playing to prevent injuries. Basketball safety equipment includes:

    • Mouth guards: Protect the teeth and mouth, especially if the child has braces, and absorb any impact in the event of a head or jaw injury

    • Knee pads: Safeguards the patella (kneecap) by absorbing the shock of high-speed impacts that may cause bruising, abrasions, or fractured bones

    • Sports eyewear: There are basketball glasses or goggles designed specifically to protect the eyes from sweat, dust, and impact while playing

    • Athletic support for boys or supportive sports bras for girls

  • Before playing any sports, not just basketball, children should do a couple of warm-up and stretching exercises

  • Have a first aid kit ready for every practice and game

  • If your child is injured during practice or a game, seek medical care immediately

  • Children should be playing in a safe and secure environment free from hazards and damage

  • Playing basketball should be a fun activity. Pressuring a child to be too competitive can have long-term effects


The Benefits of Playing Basketball at a Young Age

Basketball is a sport that requires a lot of practice, but it is also one of the most rewarding sports. Once your child has decided to play basketball, or you want them to give basketball a try, be prepared to provide them with your full support. Playing basketball provides them with many lifelong benefits, but kids can only attain them with your help.

Physical Benefits

Stronger Bones and Muscles

Children require at least one hour of physical activity per day, and basketball is one of the best ways to improve their physical fitness. Basketball is a very physical sport that requires its players to be quicker, stronger, and more coordinated compared to other games. It involves several weight-bearing exercises like running and jumping, which promote the growth of new bone tissue, strengthen the bones, and help develop muscles.

Cardiovascular Health

Children will also have to run long distances at high intensity over the course of a game. This helps them develop endurance, which will benefit them in other sports as well as their daily lives.

Improves Balance and Coordination

Doing basketball drills and playing games consistently helps develop hand-eye coordination and improve spatial awareness. Coordination is the ability to perform motor movements quickly and depends on the person's ability to effectively control those movements with the help of the central nervous system. In basketball, the hands are used to shoot, dribble, and pass the ball, while the eyes are used to gather information.

On the other hand, spatial awareness makes children more attuned to their surroundings and conscious of their position in relation to other objects (for instance, knowing how many steps it’ll take to go near the hoop and how fast the ball will travel before it gets to them).

In general, basketball promotes living a healthy lifestyle. In order to play basketball, athletes must be in good physical condition, which in turn inspires kids to take care of their bodies so they can play more or perform better because they can't play otherwise.

Motor Skills

Motor skills allow people to make the physical movements necessary for carrying out daily tasks. It develops early in toddlers and continues all the way into early adulthood. Basketball is a great activity for the development of fine and gross motor skills in children. 

Fine motor skills are those that make use of the small muscles in the hand or wrist and call for a high level of control and precision, such as dribbling, throwing, and catching. Activities that require larger motions like running, jogging, and walking use and develop children’s gross motor skills.

Motor skills allow children to perform the actions necessary to live life, including playing, eating, and getting around. It will be challenging to function in daily life and at school without good motor skills.

Cognitive Benefits

Apart from helping make your kid healthier, playing basketball can also do wonders for their mental health! Here are some major cognitive benefits of starting basketball at a young age:


Because basketball is played by teams, your child will be introduced to new people and learn the value of working together. It will help them gain some new friends while improving their social skills. Players on a team need to be receptive to constructive feedback and suggestions from their teammates. Moreover, they will gain experience in providing suggestions and looking out for one another as a team.

One cannot win a game by themselves. Playing basketball, then, demonstrates what occurs when one person does not provide his or her fair share of effort toward achieving whatever objective the group has set and how everyone suffers as a result. In this way, being a part of a team offers valuable life lessons that the child can use even as they go into adulthood.


Playing basketball helps children develop discipline since they learn that not following the game’s rules has consequences — which is what happens when you get called for a foul or lose the ball. Moreover, teams have to practice hard and follow their basketball coach's instructions in order to become better players. This requires that each player put in the effort needed to get better at the game.

Another aspect of playing basketball is respecting your opponents and referees. Basketball games can get heated, but it's important for kids to learn how to maintain their composure and respect their opponents when things get tough. This teaches them how to handle pressure situations in general and how to treat other people with respect.

Character Building

Basketball is a great way to build character in your child. It teaches kids how to handle pressure situations. Even just a practice session can be nerve-wracking for first-timers. Your child will develop patience, focus, and determination as they attempt to learn new skills, such as dribbling and passing a ball through the hoop. They'll undoubtedly have some setbacks along the way since their motor skills are still developing, but they need to know that it's okay.

Once they join a basketball league, they will learn how to stay cool under pressure. They will also learn to control their emotions and have a level head regardless of the situation.

Not even Michael Jordan, one of the best players in history, can win every game. Failure is inevitable, and learning to lose is another valuable life lesson that basketball offers. Learning to lose entails learning to embrace defeat and use it as a learning opportunity. The child will be able to reflect on areas that need improvement and gain a better understanding of his or her strengths and weaknesses. It will also allow them to accept constructive criticism from coaches without feeling like their self-worth has been diminished and get back up after failing without feeling embarrassed.


Basketball can help build confidence and self-esteem. Learning to play a sport is fun, but it also teaches kids how to work hard at something and witness their own skills improve over time. Playing basketball can help children develop self-esteem because it encourages them to find their own strengths and weaknesses in the game.

Basketball also teaches kids how to work hard at something and see results from their efforts. This is important because it helps them learn how to stick with something until it's done and how to keep trying when things don't go as planned. As kids become better at playing basketball, they will also feel more confident about themselves and what they are able to accomplish with hard work.

Cognitive Thinking

Basketball is a sport that not only requires a lot of physical skill but also a great amount of mental skill. It is not only fun but also helps in developing cognitive thinking, problem-solving, and decision-making skills. The game requires players to be aware of their surroundings at all times while they play. They need to be able to anticipate what others are doing and act accordingly based on this knowledge.

Stress Relief

School and household chores can put a great deal of stress on children. Playing basketball provides an opportunity for them to blow off some steam by running around and jumping up and down while having fun with friends! Children who engage in regular physical activity feel better, are healthier, and can also focus on school work better.


Getting Started With Children’s Basketball

Basketball Camp

If your child is just getting started, basketball camp can be a fun way to get them to learn new and advanced basketball skills. Typically, there are basketball camps that are geared toward specific age groups and skill levels, with coaches who are qualified to teach the campers. These camps are geared to help kids polish their skills and build them up as a player while making it fun.

Since many of the other campers are there to develop as well and share similar interests, these camps can also be wonderful places to develop social skills. Moreover, basketball camps forge healthy rivalry among players without making them take the game too seriously, so they can relax and focus on honing their skills while having a good time. They'll still learn how to play in teams and gain confidence, but without the pressure of winning, scorecards, and league standings.

Basketball League

Basketball is a pretty sophisticated sport that involves a lot of training and conditioning. It will require a lot from a player in terms of endurance, coordination, knowledge of the game’s technique, and the ability to think analytically. The key question is when your child is ready to join a league. The answer depends on his or her physical development, mental maturity, and interest in the sport.

Most coaches say that it’s best for kids to join a basketball league at ages 8 to 9. This is the age wherein they’ve developed enough mentally and physically to handle the requirements of a basketball game. It’s important to remember that while basketball is fun, playing in a team for the school can get competitive, and being at the right age, will help them equip such high-pressure situations better.

Starting Basketball Young Teaches Kids Lessons They Can Use For Life

While it’s physically demanding and requires a certain level of fitness to play well, basketball can be very beneficial to kids who want to learn a sport as early in life as possible. There are lots of benefits to playing basketball young, and one just needs to identify the right kind of program for your child.

We’re here to meet all of your child’s basketball needs in a fun and supportive environment. Whether they want to learn how to dribble, shoot, or just have an awesome time learning how to play basketball with their friends, Royal Basketball School has them covered.

At Royal Basketball School, we believe that every family should have access to elite-caliber instruction at a reasonable price. Unlike many other sports programs that charge per practice, Royal Basketball School’s most popular Advance Plan gives your child access to collegiate-caliber facilities, group classes, and the best coaches in the industry.





Basketball for youth may seem like a simple sport at first look, with all the players trying to put the ball into the hoop more times than their opponents. They also appear to make some incredible fea...

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