In this week’s class, I learned that physical literacy goes beyond the acquisition of knowledge and understanding. Physical literacy is an ongoing journey and is not about owning a single set of skills. As Whitehead (2014) states physical literacy also involves “the motivation, confidence and physical competence to value and take responsibility for engagement in physical activities for life.”
After defining physical literacy in class, it had me reflect back to how I became physically literate in soccer. I have played soccer since I was six years old and was on a competitive team throughout high school. My physical literacy in soccer developed through learning the fundamental movement skills such as passing, positioning oneself and kicking the ball. I had to gain these skills before learning and understanding the rules of the game. I can resonate to Whitehead’s definition of physical literacy because of the two words she uses- motivation and confidence. For me, motivation was a significant factor in achieving physical literacy in soccer. My soccer coaches were highly supportive, encouraging and instilled in me the confidence I needed to be the best possible player – physically, cognitively and socially. My coaches motivated me to continue building on my basic skills and foundations and to take risks when the opportunity rose. Moreover, as a soccer player I acknowledged that making mistakes is part of the learning process. Finally, I learned that having mentors to give you advice and facilitate your progress are essential in developing your skills.
Even though, I spent a great deal of time playing soccer throughout my youth; it enabled me to apply the same similar steps to achieve literacy in other sports or activities. I believe that it would have been more effective to achieve physical literacy had I participated in a variety of extracurricular physical activities throughout my youth. However, soccer was my passion as a child, and I was determined to make it my priority!