5 Great Father and Son Bonding Activities

As you well know, being a father goes beyond merely protecting and providing for your son. Being a father means being a role model for him – giving him a blueprint from which to define his masculinity. For better or for worse, a son will grow up to be more like his father than either can imagine. Bonding with your son, and, in the process, showing him what it means to be a man, is an essential aspect of fatherhood. Sharing in an activities helps to strengthen that bond. In order to instill in your son the morals and values that you yourself hold, it will take a great deal more than a few conversations. You have to “practice what you preach,” showing your son what it means to apply those values to the practice of everyday life. There’s no better way to go about that than by joining your son in some one-on-one activities that you can both learn from, and enjoy.
In no particular order, here are five activities that you can enjoy with your son.

1. CAMPING

Camping is a classic, time-honored father and son bonding activity that will truly never become outdated. Perhaps it has to do with some primal instinct that “roughing it” reawakens. Perhaps it’s a survival instinct, the son relying upon the father for protection and guidance out in the wilderness – a world that modern society takes us farther and farther away from. Or, perhaps, it’s just because the two of you are stuck out in the woods with nothing better to do than a little bonding. Whether it’s all of the above, or none of it, you and your son will both take more than just mosquito bites away from the trip.

2. HUNTING & FISHING

While hunting and fishing are two very different sports, they share enough similarities in terms of their bonding potential that both can count as a single activity here. Not only do they tie in well with the camping trips suggested above, but they also allow a man to bond with his son in many of the same ways. Teaching your son the ins and outs of building a blind, or showing him where largemouth bass feed in the evening, will provide you both with memories that will last a lifetime. He’ll never forget the lesson’s he’ll learn while sharing in these typically masculine activities with you; you’ll cherish the memories that go along with them.

3. HOUSEHOLD AND AUTOMOTIVE PROJECTS

There are certain things that every man should just know, like how to change a tire or unclog a drain. When your son grows up, people will simply expect him to know how to do these things, and it’s your job to teach him. Keep in mind that you’re the teacher, but you’re not in a classroom. Be sure to let your son take part in some hands-on learning, and even to make mistakes (provided they’re safe mistakes to make) that you can both laugh about later. Most importantly, make the most of this time you spend teaching your son how to be a man. Don’t just teach him how to do things, teach him why those things are done. Once your son understands the importance of a regular oil change, he’ll care more about how to do it.

4. SPORTING EVENTS

If you still have the pair of ticket stubs from the very first baseball game your father ever took you to, you’ll understand the effect that taking your son to a sporting event can have on his young mind. It doesn’t matter whether you treat him to 50-yard-line seats in the NFL playoffs or a blanket in the outfield of a minor-league baseball game, he’ll have the time of his life. He’ll also have the memories to go with it. Buy him a hotdog, teach him about the game, and save the ticket stubs – even if he doesn’t want them now, he will someday.

5. PLAYING CATCH

If you were to bet that every high school quarterback or starting pitcher learned to throw by playing catch with his father, you’d win hands down. Like the other activities, playing catch with your son teaches him valuable skills that every grown man should possess. Your son’s hand-eye coordination will improve, as will his ability to throw a perfect spiral, catch a baseball in his glove, and relate to his father. Later on, you’ll be the first thought on his mind after each game-winning touchdown he throws, and every ninth inning out he catches.