06 Mar 4 Tips for Coaching Your Child’s Sports Team
If you are coaching your child’s sporting team you need to take into consideration the difference between being your child’s parent and being their coach. This isn’t always easy. If you are driving the team for success and focused on everyone receiving trophies at the end of the year, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but you need to ensure that your child doesn’t feel extra pressure with you being their team’s coach. Here, we’ve listed some important tips every parent should know if they are coaching their child’s sporting team:
Communicate with Your Child
The most important thing to do first is to communicate with your child. Talk to them about what it will be like when you will be coaching their team. Ask them if they are o.k for you to take on this role. Reassure them that they don’t need to feel extra pressure, but at the same time to be fair to the other kids, you can’t treat them differently than the other team members. (It’s really important not to do this, because it might effect your child’s treatment in the team by the other kids as well).
Separating the Parenting Role from the Coaching Role
Doing this is simple if you can explain it to your child like this: When on the field you are the coach. As soon as you leave the field, you’re the parent. Using the change of environment is the best way of explaining this, and it also helps you to change in and out of roles.
It’s also important to remember that when you leave the field, you are now back into your parenting role. That means rather than discussing the game blow by blow with your child, you ask them what they enjoyed about the game and, of course, it’s important to praise them for their efforts as well.
Don’t Push Practice
Although you are the coach of the team, you shouldn’t be pushing your child too much to practice at home constantly. Some parents who coach their children fall into this trap. Doing this can really make your child feel pressured and uncomfortable.
Don’t Get Caught Up
While some parents find it easy to switch from parent to coach, and communicate with their child effectively, others may struggle. Being too focused on winning can be detrimental to your child’s well being. Remember, the under 10’s presentation at the end of the year is not like a corporate awards ceremony and, while winning is great, you don’t want your child to think that if they don’t win it’s the end of the world. Kids should be able to enjoy sports for fun without pressure.
When coaching your child’s sporting team the most important point to remember is that you’re a parent first, a coach second. As long as you keep the lines of communication open with your child and keep this golden rule in mind, you should find that not only will your child enjoy you coaching their team, but it will become a rewarding experience for you as well.