Chapter 2

Life is a challenge…let’s deal with it!

It is totally human, understandable and acceptable that any unconventional or just unusual idea brings along challenges, difficulties and obstacles – not only literally, but also metaphorically speaking. And FFS is definitely not an exception, especially since it refers to and involves humans! Fears, hesitations and even anxiety sometimes, might be a negative reason to abstain from such activities, whereas practicalities do not make it any easier. But who says that anything cannot be overcome? Let’s take a quick look.

Put your GUARD(ian) down!

Sometimes guardians are look up to as super heroes and we all have the tendency to forget that they have the right to have their own weak points or insecurities. And the sports field can definitely serve as the best place to help those tiny weaknesses rise up to the surface. So, when guardians (parents, relatives, friends, carers or any other guardian of a child) are invited to join some co-activity with their children, it is quite likely that they might have to deal with certain obstacles:

  • Lack of motivation: the more adults grow old the merrier they appear to distance themselves from any kind of physical activity. Sometimes this may be a conscious choice, but most of the times it is because of the pace of everyday life, the workload and the huge number of responsibilities and tasks they are asked to deliver in order to survive and support their families. This gradual removal from the active lifestyle, immediately leaves a lot of room for new life habits that seem to be rather comfortable after a hard day at work. Rings a bell? Well, sedentary life turns to become adults’ best friend and any kind of exercise – let alone real sports activities turn into a thing of the past.

The magic antidote – PROMOTE THE BENEFITS: The cure here is one and easy – MEMORY! Remind them of the joy and happiness, the boosted self-confidence and the feeling of satisfaction, the positive effects of being in a team, keeping one’s body healthy, and…why not? Some levels of physical transformation! At the end of the day…who wouldn’t like to feel younger, energized and happy at the same time?


  • Physical condition: let’s agree that we have somehow managed to overcome the previous obstacle and eventually drag a child’s guardian to be involved in some sport activity or exercise. Would they be able to make it? Logically, good habits are not the only ones to abandon us the moment we leave them behind, but so do stamina and –even basic- sports skills. Our body forgets how to be fit and is rather cumbersome, our muscles become stiff and our breath is quite easily lost. And of course, no one feels good and safe if this is the case. The fear of injury or long and complex rehabilitation seem to prevail and create extra reasons to abstain from such activities.

The magic antidote – ENSURE SAFE EXERCISE: Wait a minute! Who said that we should turn from couch-pillows to Olympic stars in one day? Following the instructions of adequately educated and experienced trainers or coaches, good warm-ups and post-exercise stretches, and a gradual increase of the exercise’s difficulty level, will ensure that getting back into the game is a smooth and safe process, while regular exercise and persistence will bring us closer to our old good selves!

  • Fear of failure: No doubt everything would be much easier if it was only physical. Though our body is not the only thing that urges us to stop or remain at pause. It’s our inside tiny voice, this small little devil dancing in our mind, screaming in our head that failure is an option. What if we don’t make it? What if we are not good enough? What if others are better than us? What if we are exposed to the eyes of our children? But honestly…what if our ego is hurt?

The magic antidote – DEBUNK SPORTS: Take a second to breathe and think…is it all about winning? Is being the best of the group a self-serving objective? And what does “doing sports” really mean? No, it’s not falling in the arena and fighting for a prize! Neither is it the win, the first place or the high performance! Sports do not equal winning anyway! It’s the joy, it’s the entertainment, it’s doing something positive for us, becoming better human beings, enjoying the team!

  • Social anxiety: Though this internal struggle does not stop with ourselves. It’s also about others. Hesitation may have many roots and the fear to expose ourselves is always playing a key-role in our decisions. How people see us, how they judge our decisions, how they criticize our performance and our external behavior, sometimes might even define who we are, what we choose, and how we build our lives. In our sports-case, the closest circle of people is the most “concerning” audience: other adult members of the team, coaches and trainers, spectators, even our very own children – a very realistic depiction of society and real-life environment. And this social pressure may stand before us as an unreachable wall that blocks our path to joy and health.

The magic antidote – ENHANCE THE TEAM SPIRIT: Stop! Turn your head around and change your focus point! Yes, fears and reservations are always there and we shall embrace them as they are part of ourselves. Never should we drown in them, though! Let’s not forget the most important key-word of the previous paragraph: TEAM! Team: a group of people who perform interdependent tasks to work toward accomplishing a common mission or specific objective. Team means respect, honesty, cooperation, accountability, mutual support, understanding and openness; team means being together and enjoying a relationship of trust and inclusion, feeling safe and comfortable. Team is exactly what the Three Musketeers have taught us: all for one and one for all!

  • Practical obstacles: Of course, self-insecurities and body challenges are not always the sole problem. Practical issues of everyday life with its hectic and stressful pace, as well as realistic struggles of every family appear to make our come back even harder. Any activity that is not related to our household or our profession, can be acknowledges as time-consuming. And who has the luxury to spend additional hours during our already hectic everyday schedule? And even if one did…do we live in times when adding extra costs in our family budget is affordable?

The magic antidote – BE PRACTICAL: Yes, these can be real difficulties. But not to the level that cannot be defeated. Taking our children to practice their sport activity gives us a great opportunity to also take advantage of this spare time in the waiting room and use it for ourselves! Train with them instead of having a simple coffee moment in the cafeteria and being bored! Join programs that offer additional discounts for joint activities of guardians and children – this is the moment and the stock to invest your precious time and money!