Families are looking to spend quality time together. With today's society, families may be struggling to find quality time together, whether its due to parents working different shifts, children involved in an array of activities, or social and work relationships consume a majority of the time. By developing a family membership plan that will allow families to come, compete, and spend quality time together will allow these families to regain connections with each other and other families. Also, it will allow parents and peers to influence their beliefs and values on their children, assisting in the development of a strong, connected family outside of the recreation center.
Social facilitation can help the influence in the presence of others on performance, including audience and coaction effect (Gill & Williams, 2008). However, this needs to carefully observed and used because the presence of an audience can increase arousal, possibly impairing learning but influences performance of a task.
Social learning theory is an important factor to consider. This is the concept that someone may behave differently in a classroom than they would in a gym, or behave differently around their parents than they would around their peers/friends (Gill & Williams, 2008).
Social influence can be demonstrated in four ways; significant others, parents, peers, or coaches. Each one has a different effect on the behavior of children in a physical activity setting. Parents may influence their beliefs and values their children. For example, a father may value sport/exercise, and believe that his son or daughter may be better off participating in a specific sport over another (football vs baseball, or volleyball vs basketball) (Courneya & McAuley, 1995). Peer influences are believed to be important because children indicate that being with friends and being able to compare against one another is an important source of competence (Smith, 2003).
The main focus of the Families Together and Active program is to positively influence children and develop performance through a wide variety of exercise and physical active, as well as a variety of influences through parents, peers, and coaches/instructors. I believe that by using a variety of ways to influence children will not only allow them to be competitive against friends but also their parents will be able to influence their beliefs and values of physical activity upon their children. Coaches/instructors will also influence these children to assist in the proper development of skills and performance tasks needed to enhance and improve performance. This is in an attempt to develop a well rounded athlete, student, and child, whether they are in the classroom, at home, or competing.
Throughout the week, kids and parents will be asked to participate in a variety of physical activity; racquetball, basketball, flag football, etc. The sports will be rotated through according to the season at which these sports are played. Along with partaking in a variety of sports, they will also be participating in a variety of exercise/fitness classes; yoga, martial arts, exercise programs, etc. The more variety offered, the less chance that kids will become bored. This will help insure motivation throughout the attendance of their membership.
We will have instructors/coaches run the activities. Demonstrating proper technique of skills and tasks, yet we will ask for there parents to demonstrate these tasks as well. Along with parents, we will have peers and children demonstrate tasks and skills to allow the other children to see and learn through visual observation and imagery.
By allowing children to learn through a variety of influences; parents, peers, and coaches, it can assist in a well rounded development. Doing so will allow parents to influence their beliefs and values on their children, which will also help in the development of family relations. By putting these kids in an environment where these are influenced by peers, it will help develop a competitive edge, increasing arousal for performance, but by focusing on parent and coaches influence, it will also assist in the learning process that needs to take place. Since peer influences may impair learning, parental and coaches influence should help negate this impairment.
Courneya, K. S., & McAuley, E. (1995). Cognitive mediators of the social influence-exercise adherence relationship: A test of the theory of planned behavior. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 18(5), 499-515.
Gill, D. L., & Williams, L. (2008). Psychological Dynamics of Sport and Exercise (3rd Ed.). Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.
Smith, A. L. (2003). Peer relationships in physical activity contexts: a road less traveled in youth sport and exercise psychology research. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 4(1), 25-39.