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The biggest mistakes parents make when their kids play team sports

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Many kids are racing for fall youth sports teams as the new school year begins, whether it’s a school team or a youth or recreational league team.

Parents and coaches should establish positive communication. One expert says it should be done “well before” the first sneaker hits the field.

Jason Sachs, president of the Positive Coaching Alliance in San Francisco, Calif., said in an interview with Fox News Digital, “The first time parents have meaningful interactions with their coaches is because they have a problem. not.

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The Positive Coaching Alliance is a national non-profit organization founded in 1998 to “develop the culture of youth sports so that all children, regardless of social or economic situation, have access to positive youth sports experiences. Our mission is to change.

Sports provide children with life lessons

Sports teach children life lessons. It “stays with you long after the play is over,” said youth sports expert Jason Sachs.
(AP Photo/Salina Journal, Tom Dorsey)

Sachs said that participating in sports is an “incredible opportunity” to not only “focus on teaching the sport and how to play”, but also to instill “lessons that will last long after the kids’ competitive careers are over.” ” said.

Sachs has coached at the high school and college level. He said good communication is also a coach’s job.

“After high school, if your child is going off to college or entering the workforce, as a parent you don’t fight them.”

Coaches need to make sure that both parents and players understand “what is expected of the team and organization, and what are the goals.”

The coach should also say, “This is how you and I communicate. If there is a problem, this is my preferred type of communication.”

Parents also need to be proactive when it comes to communication.

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Sachs says to always thank your coach after practice. Many youth and recreational coaches in his league are volunteering.

“It goes a long way to say, ‘Thank you for spending so much time with your kids,'” he said.

good coach gives players

Jason Sacks, president of the Positive Coaching Alliance, says good coaches will give players “tangible things to work on.”

One of the most common issues between coaches and parents is playing time, says Sachs.

“Let’s say you have a high school basketball team and your son or daughter doesn’t feel like they’re getting enough playing time.

“Instead of you (the parent) talking to the coach, it’s a great opportunity for the child to talk directly to the coach and get used to that kind of conversation,” Sachs said.

“In all the conversations I’ve had with my parents, I’ve never had more time to play.”

As an example, Mr. Sachs says, a child might say, “Coach, I feel like I should be playing more. What can I do in practice to get more playing time? What do I need to show?” said.

A good coach, he explained, will give players “a tangible thing to work on.”

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“After high school, if your child goes off to college or goes off to work, you’re not there as a parent to join the fight,” Sachs stressed.

A father of three from Reading, Massachusetts, Brian Tobin has coached children ages 5-18 in lacrosse, football, baseball, basketball, and hockey.

“It’s not the parents’ responsibility to make sure the players have playing time, it’s the players’ responsibility to buy the time,” said one youth coach.

“I recommend never approaching a coach about playing time,” he told Fox News Digital in an email.

“It’s not the parent’s responsibility to give the players playing time, it’s the players’ responsibility to buy the time,” he added.

If parents “trust coaches to be there to build competitive teams and programs for the benefit of all players,” Tobin said, “let them do the work and they can do it.” We should build the best possible team,” he said.

“I recommend never approaching coaches about playing time.”

“When you, as a parent, talk to your child about playtime, your advice should be simple, ‘Work for it.’

Tobin said he was not allowed to speak disparagingly of children’s coaches.

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“Complaining about the coach in front of the players changes the player’s attitude towards the coach and worsens the overall experience,” he warned.

A high school baseball player is pictured here.Older children should

A high school baseball player is pictured here. Older kids need to “advocate for themselves,” experts and coaches say.
(Fox News Digital)

Regarding approaching coaches, Tobin said, “The best rule is to give yourself 24 hours in advance.

“Ninety percent of the things that make you angry or confused will be resolved in that time,” he said.

“If you don’t like the way your coach teaches, jump in and volunteer as a coach yourself or bite your tongue.”

“None of the conversations I’ve had with parents have led to more playing time,” he noted.

“Kids have to learn to earn, polish and grit to get into the lineup. And they have to work hard to stay there. It’s never a parent thing.”

Another Boston-area Youth Recreation League coach, who has worked with children ages 5 to 15 in both T-Ball and Babe Ruth baseball, told Fox News Digital: Told. the heat of the day. ”

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If your child is younger, ask your coach what your child can do to improve their skills.

“Older kids need to assert themselves,” he said.

“Let this be their experience, not yours,” said a parental over-involvement coach.
(Fox News Digital)

As for recreational leagues, he advised, “If you don’t like the way coaches coach you, jump in and volunteer as a coach yourself or bite your tongue.”

“Sports can be a great way for children to learn life lessons,” he said. You have to navigate.


“Kids start playing sports because of their love of the game,” he said.

“Over-involvement of a parent can quickly ruin it. Let this be their experience, not yours.”