Tips for Parents of Young Athletes
The parent is as important to the success of any team as the players. It is imperative that coaches and parents work together to help ensure a successful and positive experience for the athlete. As a courtesy, please keep coaches informed of any issues that may be going on with your child. If he or she has been sick, taking medication, have difficulty with school work, etc, please inform their coach as soon as possible. Parents and coaches must communicate with mutual respect, and each reserve the right to postpone conversations that may escalate to a later time and/or date. Heated discussions have no place in front of athletes/players.
Parents (especially ones that are former athletes) should refrain from "coaching" their kids at home and away from practice. They are being taught to play as a team with each player performing specific assignments that his or her teammates can rely on. A player who departs from the game plan to do something a parent(s) has coached them to do is letting down the team, coaches, and him or herself. These actions can potentially open the door for the opponent to win the game, cause a teammate to be injured (depending upon the physicality of the sport). Trust that coaches have what is best for all participants in mind at all times. If you do not believe so, schedule an appointment with the Head Coach away from the practice or game area. This will enable you to express your concerns and get immediate and appropriate feedback in hopes to come to a mutual agreement.
Please keep the following in mind as you watch your child/children participate in sports:
1. While competition is great, someone has to lose. There are valuable lessons that can be learned from winning AND losing.
2. How well or poorly they play is not a reflection upon you.
3. Keep it in perspective. Your child may be good, but it is all relative. There are thousands of athletes across the country that are as good or better than your child. The reality is that your he or she will not play professionally or even at the collegiate level.
4. Periodically have a talk with your child/children. Ask if they are having fun and learning from their experience.
5. Avoid living your athletic dream through your child.
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