After years of coaching children, I can tell you that the unequivocal favorite exercise of kids is rope climbing. They are challenging yet require bravery, strength, body awareness, and skill, not to mention they are cool and exhilarating. The fearless nature of children, combined with practice and confidence, makes this task one that can be achieved with persistence and patience, similar to any goal or challenge in life. During the quest to climb the rope, a child becomes aware of where they are strong and where they need to improve. These same traits are essential in having great self-awareness, a crucial life skill, as it helps us find and know our strengths, weaknesses, and character.

To help our children improve self-awareness, as a parent and coach, I’ve learned that allowing kids to explore and be exposed to many different types of activities, whether athletic or intellectual, is essential. To not diminish their creativity or slacken their confidence, it’s important to ensure that these opportunities are made available at the right time and place, a tricky gambit indeed! During this journey of exploration, I’ve seen kids thrive in some areas and witnessed the thrill of victory. These certainly are the best moments! But I’ve also seen them cope with the agony of defeat. At these times, you need to be there for a hand to grab when they are ready to get up and try again.

Regardless of the success or setback, use these moments to discuss and help them learn from the experience. If a child isn’t given multiple opportunities to try to climb that rope, how will they ever get to the top and gain the confidence to forge ahead in the future?

Life is filled with highs and lows, storms and rainbows, but hopefully, what I’ve been able to teach my kids and students is that each is an opportunity to build character and resilience as it is how you move through these periods that will ultimately lead you to find the best version of yourself.

Get in touch with Bonnie Tuttle:
Instagram: bontutt