TO THE PARENTS OF YOUTH ATHLETES...
Most youth sports parents enjoy watching their child in sports, have fun at the games and practices, thank the coaches for his or her efforts, and generally are great to work with. If you're one of those parents, check out the resources page, maybe there'll be a nugget or two you'll find interesting.
If you've had a conflict with a coach in the past, regardless of how justified you felt you were, please keep reading. If you’ve engaged in a heated or tense conversation with your
child’s coach, you were both likely in the wrong.
All parents, follow the links below to find more information on numerous topics important for you.
What you think you know, may not be true...
The Parents' Seat
Follow this link to the video - it's the #1 resource parents should watch prior to every season.
Many youth sports parents are former athletes who know exactly what their child is NOT doing or what they're doing wrong and how to help him or her get better.
There are books written about the coach-
parent relationship, numerous YouTube
videos on the topic, as well as articles
and podcasts. There are even full
education courses for coaches to take to
teach them how to properly communicate
with parents. Coaches cite the problems
with parents as the #1 issue they face in
coaching and very successful youth and
high school coaches have quit their jobs
because problems existed with parents.
We love our kids to the moon and back
and some of us truly believe the car ride home, the between innings conversation, or yelling instructions from the sidelines is the best time or best way to get our message across.
Some of us understand that screaming instructions at our children on the court/field/mat has a negative effect but our emotions take over when we see our kid make a mistake, or see something he or she could do better.
According to many psychologists, a great method to overcome emotional reactions is to practice or rehearse your responses to highly emotional situations. As an exercise in restraint, practice what you'll say when a bad call is made against your son or daughter or when he or she makes a mistake. This will help prepare you for that inevitable situation.
Coaching from the sidelines will not have the desired effect on your athlete. At a minimum it will distract the athlete, and likely will cause internal conflict, especially if your guidance differs from that of the coach.
Consider this analogy:
Driving down the road a truck races around your car and cuts you off, just to slam on the breaks and make a quick right turn. Of course, from your perspective, you're angry, probably using some choice words towards the driver. From the driver's perspective, a close family member of his was just rushed to the hospital due to an unforeseen emergency. Fair point, he could have done things a little differently, but he had his reasons.
So does the coach.
The appropriate steps to take in a situation in which you believe the coach has made a mistake, or your athlete needs to learn of a mistake, is to wait until after the game, approach the coach, and have the conversation with him or her. It's the coach's responsibility to correct the player.