Information courtesy Ronn Jeffrey of Youth Alternatives:
As a parent, I loved watching my kids play sports. It's great to support your kids, but sometimes parents need to be reminded that games are for having fun. When parents over-react or get to serious about sports it takes the fun out of the game
We want our children to have a positive experience with sports but sometimes we get caught up in the excitement of games . Good sportsmanship begins at home. If we want our children to be good sports we have to set a good example.
1.Kids Play to Have Fun! In a recent study of 10,000 young people between the ages of 10 and 18 winning was far down the list of why they were involved in sports. Number one was having fun. Winning was 10th on the list.
2. Let the Coach...Coach! Keep your child out of the middle. Don't put yourself between the child and his coach. Try to reinforce the coach's instructions. If you have a concern talk privately with the coach. But remember, the coach is in charge. It's better to help our children learn how to adjust to difficult situation than to try to fix it for our kids.
3.It's Your Kids Game Not Yours! Don't live vicariously through your kids. It's great to watch our kids play but be careful not to push your kids to hard. Let them succeed for themselves not for you. Encourage your child to do their best but don't let the hope for scholarships and pro careers cause you to push your children to hard.
4.Stay Calm and Positive! Sometimes the old saying "If you don't have anything good to say don't say anything" is a pretty good rule. It doesn't help our kids when we shout negative, critical remarks at your child, other children, the coaches or the referees.
5.After the Game...Listen More and Talk Less! Don't launch instantly into a detailed post-game analysis. Your child knows what happened during the game...he doesn't need help remembering the details. Let him initiate the conversation and focus on how he feels not whether he missed the shot or lost the race.