Some children are natural athletes, and developmental disabilities don’t have to get in the way of participating in team sports. If anything, youth sports can be a healthy and important outlet for kids of all levels of ability and needs–provided programs are adjusted to meet with the changing population of kids who have developmental disabilities. One father gives his own account of how sports helped his son, and how such activity can be asset for kids with autism and other conditions.
“An estimated 10 million children in the United States between the ages of three and 17 have a developmental disability and that number is rising. These children often have physical, emotional, social, and cognitive challenges that result in a lower health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and much lower sport participation rates than neurologically typical children. Youth sports have proven to increase the HRQoL in children.”
Do you think it’s time for more schools and youth sports programs to make room for kids with developmental disabilities? If you or someone you know has a child with a developmental disability, have you considered sports as a form of enrichment and therapy? Share your input in the comments.