Welcome to the July issue of CHILD magazines, introduced by our editor-in-chief, Kim Richards.
Last year, at my son’s kindergarten information evening, I found myself balancing precariously on a (very) little chair next to another mother. She looked strangely familiar to me, and before you could say ‘Foundation Font’, I was three sentences into that awkward “where do I know you from?” conversation.
Long story short, it turned out my hunch was right. Her father had given me my first job at a sports centre kiosk, when I was 15. He was a former teammate of my dad; both Australian Socceroos in the 70s. Which meant, sitting together in this little public school classroom, 40 kilometres away from where we grew up, were the grandchildren of Australian soccer legends. Random, right?
This month’s cover stars, Elise and Felix, both play soccer; Elise’s mum is quite the player, too. I went down the netball route, despite harbouring a deep desire to strap on the soccer boots. My dad wouldn’t let me play; he insisted it was ‘a man’s game’. I often wonder, if I was a child today, if he’d have had a different view. Women are now putting so many traditionally male-dominated sports on their scorecard. And these days, plenty of men are playing netball, too. (But don’t tell my dad.)
In this issue, we talk to a male ballet dancer and a female AFL player about their experience challenging these stereotypes; they have some sound advice for the champions of the future.
Dr Sam Elliott, from Flinders University, explains the dos and don’ts of sport pep talks with kids; I’ve actually heeded his advice myself and noticed a change in my kids’ reactions to my ‘cheering’.
And don’t miss reading our story about Gen XL; we conceived this story after talking with Dr Jill Padrotta, who had stumbled into a social media exchange and become confounded by how many parents thought ‘fat’ was ‘normal’. Flinder’s University has devised a fabulous program to help families tackle this very issue and Dr Lucinda Bell explains how it works.