Keys to Peak Parental Performance
- Let the coaches coach. This includes goal setting and psyching up your
child for practice and post game critiques. Having more than one "coach"
- Do not bribe or offer incentives. Leave motivation to the coach. Offering
money for scoring goals, for example, distracts your child from concentrating
properly in practices and games.
- Support your child unconditionally. Do not withdraw love when your child
- Support all players on the team. Your child’s teammates are not the enemy.
When they are playing better than your child is, she has a wonderful
opportunity to learn.
- Encourage your child to talk with the coaches. "Taking responsibility" –
whether about playing difficulties or missing an upcoming match – is a big
part of soccer.
- Understand and display appropriate game behavior. When you cheer
appropriately, you help your child focus on the parts of the game she can
control (positioning, decision-making, skills, etc.). If she begins focusing
on elements she cannot control (field conditions, the referee, the weather,
etc.), she will not play up to her ability.
- Pass the reality test. If your child’s team loses but she played her best,
help her see this as a "win". Remind her to focus on the process, not the end
result. Fun and satisfaction should come from "striving to win". Conversely,
do not let her be satisfied with "winning" if it comes from inadequate
preparation and performance.
- Keep soccer in its proper perspective. The game should not be larger than
her life. If your child’s performance produces strong emotions in you,
suppress them. Keep your own goals and needs separate from your child’s.
Remember that your relationship with your child will continue long after her
competitive soccer days end.
TO OUR CHILDREN:
KIDS YOU CAN ALWAYS GET BETTER IF YOU WORK HARD AND KEEP YOUR
MIND OPEN. SOCCER IS A BEAUTIFUL GAME THAT ONLY GETS MORE ENJOYABLE AS YOUR
SKILL AND UNDERSTANDING RISE. AS LONG AS YOU ENJOY IT, PLAY AS MUCH AS YOU CAN
BECAUSE YOUR TEAMMATES ARE COUNTING ON YOU!