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The Best Sports for Kids with Autism

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The Best Sports for Kids with Autism

Apr 13, 2021

It’s recommended that young kids get at least 60 minutes of exercise a day. A great way to help your child hit this goal is to get them involved in a sport. But for parents of children with autism, this can pose a challenge. On this Health Minute, Dr. Julia Connelly, director at University of Utah Autism Spectrum Disorder Clinic, recommends some sports that can be fun and engaging for children with autism.

Episode Transcript

Interviewer: What sports are good for children with autism? Dr. Julia Connelly is the Clinical Director of the University of Utah Autism Spectrum Disorder Clinic. What do you recommend?

Dr. Connelly: Even though it's very tricky to engage kids on the autism spectrum in physical activity, we still recommend that they engage in 60 minutes every day. We really look for individual sports that focus on skill improvement, interest, and having fun. Some of the examples would be gymnastics, swimming, track and field, and climbing. And the reason why we particularly like these sports is that even though they're individual sports, kids still are on a team which can be very beneficial for them.

Interviewer: Any final advice?

Dr. Connelly: I would say do not force your child into any sport. If they're not interested right now either explore other options or give it some time and try again later.

updated: April 13, 2021
originally published: April 19, 2019