When I think of my childhood, I remember the fun moments created with friends while playing. These outdoor games were fun and helped establish lasting relationships. However, many of them were somewhat dangerous, and at some point, we would hear our parents yell something along the lines of, “Please be careful! You’re going to hurt yourself!”
Hopscotch is one of those fun games that can quickly become not-so-fun if precaution isn’t taken. The game itself can be traced back to many centuries, which is quite astounding when you consider how popular it still is today.
Hopscotch comes with various dangers, downsides, and disadvantages. Some of these downsides include the probability of accidents and getting hurt. Sometimes these accidents are not of much concern since they are minor, and they teach the kids to be more resilient. However, sometimes these accidents could be serious and, in some cases, fatal.
With possible dangers at the forefront of your mind, let’s consider why a simple game of Hopscotch can end in tears and getting hurt.
1. Lack of Supervision and Guidance
Most outdoor games are usually unsupervised. Once in a while, you will see an adult trying to glimpse what is happening in the field. However, it gets difficult to understand what is happening there, and most return to the comfort of whatever they were doing.
Lack of supervision may result in fighting or misunderstandings that may result in injury. Supervision is important since you can understand the children and the different behaviors they are portraying.
2. Children are Exposed to Bullies
While playing Hopscotch is likely to expose children to bullies. In most cases, you cannot spot bullies among playmates. In the presence of an adult, bullies will behave normally to avoid raising any suspicion. However, after an adult is out of sight, most bullies will start picking up other children.
Unfortunately, most bullied kids do not speak up, and the bullies keep having their way. This, in most instances, results in low self-esteem that may interfere with the social growth and development of these children. That is why you need to be extra careful when you have your children engaging in Hopscotch. If you are not careful, most bullied kids will tend to avoid play and socializing.
3. Minimal Safety Structures
Hopscotch is a game that does not require many tools. So, most children play it just anywhere. Some people may view this as an advantage, but the fact remains that there are no safety structures. Therefore, the kids are exposed to dangerous sites that are most likely the opposite of kid-friendly.
It is essential to check the safety standards of a place and check on all the hazards. The last thing you want is kids playing Hopscotch around the rubble, broken glass, and unsanitary conditions of a broken-down building or construction site.
4. Risks of Bruising and Getting Hurt
Another downside of a Hopscotch game is the risk of getting bruised or hurt. As a parent or adult, you need to be careful and frequently check on your kid(s). At the same time, when you are playing Hopscotch, there is a high probability of falling and getting bruised.
To play this game, ensure your balance is good and you are physically fit. The hoping requires a significant amount of energy, and you or your child could get hurt badly in case of a bad move.
5. Exposure to Dirt and Dust
Playing Hopscotch exposes one to dirt and dust. For children with allergies or asthma, this can be a serious problem. It’s better to play Hopscotch on a sidewalk, the driveway, or an open space that is well-ventilated.
In every situation, we are faced with unfairness and inequality, even in a game of Hopscotch. Some children may be excluded from the game and have to watch on as others have fun. In a game like Hopscotch, there are instances where there will be unfairness or unequal treatment, especially among kids.
Kids tend to favor the most popular or funniest kid. Unfair treatment in some instances is given to the quiet and reserved kids. Unless you are very sure of your child’s playmates, you need to be extra careful.
7. Picking Up Bad Behavior
One of the greatest problems parents and tutors face is poor discipline. When kids are social and engaging in outdoor games, there is a high chance of picking up bad behavior and habits from other kids. Peer pressure will push even a well-behaved child into making wrong decisions.
When playing the game of Hopscotch, your child can pick up behaviors like cheating or bad language. To safeguard against this, make sure that your child plays while supervised or with an adult nearby.
8. Possibility of Accidents
When playing a game like Hopscotch, kids tend to throw themselves into the game. Sometimes kids will set up a play area in dangerous spots and completely overlook general safety.
If you aren’t sure where your child is playing Hopscotch, it’s best to investigate. The last thing you need is to find out your child has been run over while trying to play Hopscotch in the street (kids have done stranger and more dangerous things!).
When playing the game of Hopscotch, there is always the possibility of monotony. Sometimes if we love doing something, we will keep doing it for days or hours, not giving room for other activities. When it comes to children, monotony can lead to a lack of creativity, boredom, and even lethargy.
10. Unpredictable Weather
We can not control the weather patterns, and unfortunately, the weather will determine if your kids can get involved in outdoor games like Hopscotch. Unpredictable weather can bring a game to a sudden end which can cause great upset for players and even leave some kids feeling deeply disappointed. Of course, if the game is drawn up in chalk, the rain will wash it all away.
Most outdoor games like Hopscotch require high energy for a long period of time. The whole process of hopping back and forth over and over is bound to exhaust anyone. In a case where children are involved, playing for many hours may cause fatigue. In school, for instance, after too much play, it might be difficult to concentrate in class since the child is all sweaty, tired, and disinterested in lessons.
12. Poor Relations
Kids can get easily obsessed with a game like Hopscotch. While it’s a great game to play as a group, a child can and often will play it alone. The problem with this is that it can develop antisocial behavior. When children aren’t required to interact, talk and share information, they can close themselves and become overly obsessed with the task of hopping back and forth.
If you want your kid to be well-rounded, limit Hopscotch play and encourage additional interaction and participation in other activities too.
13. Exposure to Bad Company
Just because your child is innocently playing a game of Hopscotch, it doesn’t mean that the other children are a good influence. Like any game, it can attract a group of people where your child can and will be exposed to many different ideas, perceptions, and possible bad behaviors.
Before allowing your child to disappear with a group of children to play a few hours of Hopscotch, know who they will be spending time with.
14. Low Concentration and Addiction
Hopscotch games can be very addictive. Similarly, playing Hopscotch can result in low concentration when it comes to kids, especially when at school. Kids will only be waiting for the next break to go out and play.
If we are not careful and don’t give the right guidance, this can ultimately influence their performance in school. In other instances, the children will neglect their duties and responsibilities. It’s important to teach children to develop a balance between hard work and play.
There’s no denying that Hopscotch has its upsides. It’s a high-energy game that burns calories and has kids having fun. But that doesn’t mean it’s not bad at all. Like all games, there are disadvantages and downsides that parents should be fully aware of before allowing their child to play the game. The points above serve as a brief overview of what those disadvantages and downsides are.