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4 yr old fast runner

Answered By Mick Grant & John Molvar

Question

Our 4 year old son is very fast. He can out run or at least keep up with most 10 year olds. He loves it and does not grow tired. As long as he shows an interest in running how do we encourage him and help him grow?

Answer

I'd certainly make sure he stays active and trys a number of sports, but I wouldn't get him into track training for quite a while. It would be ok to have him do a short race from time to time just to keep his interest in racing. I'd probably let him begin practicing a little at around age 8 or 9, but only learning a few fundamentals and making sure it is interesting and fun. Don't rush to a track club that has long (and usually boring) practices and competitions. Think of long term development. Each year let him do a little bit more. He sounds like a boy who could be good for many years, so be patient. High school and college running is much more important than now.