Sports, even those associated with youth players, can be competitive. Everyone can get worked up about the game, including coaches and parents. The adults want to see their kids do well and when it happens, it sparks a ton of excitement.
However, this can lead to parents who yell at referees, stomp around the field, or shout out rude comments. Nobody wants to be a negative sports parent but you may not be aware of how to be a positive one. Below are several tips for being a positive and supportive youth sports parent.
In youth sports, the best players may not always be the ones who start a game. Referees may not always make the right calls and coaches may sometimes have players go forward with a bad call.
Sure, it’s great to see your kid win but it isn’t everything. If winning is the only thing that matters to you in youth sports, a different mindset is needed.
Since winning isn’t the priority, fun should be. The amount of fun your child is having should be your largest concern.
Is your child having fun at practice? Do they enjoy their coach? Are they hyped to go to games? This is more important than being on a strong team. They’ll enjoy what they are doing and want to keep at it even when they get older.
Many parents pressure their children to score more points, play harder, do better at defense, and train more. It all boils down to pushing your child to go further. Many parents remind their children of how much sports cost and expect them to perform well.
The problem is this level of pressure makes playing less fun. It can add stress to a situation and kids may feel as if they can’t stand up to your expectations. Once a sport is no fun, kids will want to stop playing.
If you’re more invested in the achievements of your child in sports than they are, it could be time to think things through. It’s not uncommon for parents to miss the opportunities they had when they were young and say their kids won’t.
However, kids should be allowed to create their own path rather than having to follow along with the one that they think is best for them.
Youth sports are about the kids, not the parents. Sports offer an environment for kids to make friends, stay healthy, learn new things, and have a ton of fun. Your main goal should be to keep your kids playing sports. Ultimately, your actions have a part in whether your child learns and has fun during these experiences.