Being the parent of a child in youth sports can be an awesome experience. There is nothing like seeing your child learn new skills, make new friends, and then take the field or court and dazzle you with their performance. However, everyone who attends these kinds of games is aware of that one parent who simply does not seem to have a clue. This type of parent is the type who gets too into the game and ends up making a spectacle of themselves and embarrassing their children. While you may not believe you could ever be a parent like this, the potential is there for anyone to become too emotionally involved. Here are a few tips to help you avoid being that parent.
One of the first things you need to keep in mind when you are the parent of a child in youth sports is that it is ok if your child is not a super athlete. The point of having your child participate in sports should not be to see them hit it big as a professional athlete in their sport of choice. That is not to say that is not a good goal to have if they have the skills and abilities to do so, but having unrealistic expectations for your children sets them up for failure that could be devastating to their psychological health later on down the road.
In light of understanding this, you should avoid giving your child harsh criticism for not performing well during games and practices. You should always help your child understand where they are weak as a player, but never without massive amounts of encouragement to push them to do better. When you are pushing your child, make sure that you are not pushing too hard or that you are making winning or losing the focal point of their experience in youth sports.
Finally, you want to make sure to keep your cool in the middle of youth sports games. Try not to take it personally if your child gets fouled or if the other team is trouncing them on the scoreboard. While it is a parents instinct to protect their children, many who get passionate at these moments often vent and end up demonstrating poor sportsmanship. This is not only embarrassing, but it also sets a horrible example for your children to look up to. After all, molding a good and healthy attitude in sports is very important.