Something to Think About…from Aleksandar Mirosavljev

It is very common that young athletes do not like when their parents come to watch their games or matches. Why do you think this happens?

One reason for this can be that athletes play under more pressure because they want to show off in front of their parents. The other reason can be the fact that some parents simply cannot be realistic when it comes to their children’s athletic abilities. It is impossible that one high school basketball team has 12 future Lebron James or that every soccer team has a Lionel Messi. It is nice that parents are believing in potential their children have, but this should not be taken to the extreme. So, job of every parent is to teach a kid to try his/her best at all times, however, a child needs to understand that sport is not the most important thing in the world. It is not the end of the world if a child had a bad sport performance.

Below are five common mistakes and solutions for sports parents:

parent yelling

Overreacting when the young athlete makes an error or doesn’t perform up to expectations.
Solution: Communicate unconditional acceptance, regardless of the outcome.

Demanding too much time or commitment from young athletes so that they are over-trained, burned out or continually injured.
Solution: The achievement standards set should be within the athlete’s capabilities.

Keeping the pressure on so every practice and game become a “life-or-death” situation; requiring that young athlete improves by a certain amount each day.
Solution: After a tough loss, listen, support, understand and praise. Provide an accepting environment for the athlete to fully feel and express the emotion after the event.

Acting like your child is the only athlete on the team
Solution: Understand that your child cannot get full attention from coach, teammates, and others at all times. Every child on the field needs to receive the same amount of attention.

After game analysisPerforming a post-competition analysis sooner than their child would like
Solution: Let your child cool down and relax before you analyze and criticize his game

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