Top 10 Ways to Help Your Kids Get the Most Out of Organized Sports
1. Avoid keeping statistics on your kids’ performance. That’s what parents who are wrapped up in the success fantasy do. Just keep encouraging your child to play hard, fair, and passionately and to be a good member of the team.
2. Always encourage your children to respect and obey the coach, regardless of the coach’s effectiveness.
3. Never ever upbraid umpires or referees regarding a call they’ve made. They’re humans. If you think a bad call has been made, accept it and move on. Remember, it’s just a game.
4. Avoid getting involved in any disparaging discussions with other parents about coaches, athletes, officials, umpires, or other parents. Encourage them to support these people instead of talking negatively about them.
5. Make your children finish their commitment to a season, even if they aren’t enjoying themselves. This will be great practice for their future lives when they’ll be called on to finish a lot of commitments that aren’t any fun.
6. Encourage all of the kids on the team, not just your child.
7. Be sensitive to the kids who may not have a lot of support from their parents or are having stress in their family. Give them rides to and from practices and games. Invite them (and their parents) to join you after games for ice cream.
8. If your kids are on a winning team, remind them that humility should be their ongoing attitude. Discourage your children from gloating in victory or basking in applause.
9. Don’t allow your children to show off when they’ve performed well. They’re supposed to do their best. Teach them to win with graciousness.
10. If your children are on a losing team, don’t criticize the coach. Instead, encourage the coach and say how much you appreciate the effort he or she is putting into your child and the team as a whole.
BONUS: Don’t focus your children on winning. Focus them on playing their best and working in harmony with the team, and the victories will take care of themselves. Greatness beats success every time.
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