10 Commandments for Parents and Coaches of Girls

Published on June 23rd, 2011

1. Sport must be fun.

  • We enjoy success but we don’t enjoy striking out three times in a row. Skill is very important to the realization of fun.
  • We enjoy learning new things but we don’t enjoy boredom.
  • We enjoy respect but we don’t enjoy terror, threats and negatives.

2. Keep competition in perspective. Educating your child is key.

  • Only put your child in competitive situations with evenly matched opponents.
  • Separate performance from self-worth.
  • Better to lose and do your personal best than win and play ugly.
  • Better to lose to a good opponent and learn what you need to do to get better than to win against someone who can’t play and learning nothing new.

3. Skill is a function of repetition and a key to having fun.

  • Kids learn/teach themselves.
  • Good teachers help.
  • Imitation is an important learning method — take your child to see others play.

4. Help your child find a sport that is just right for her.

  • Commit to a certain time period
  • Commit to skill-learning before you give up.
  • Make the deal before you play

5. You can and should coach your child.

  • It’s not hard to be better than a six-year-old
  • It’s not hard to teach.

6. Lead by example as a spectator and as a cheerleader.

  • Be positive toward your child.
  • Be positive to all other children and their parents.

7. Deliver value messages over and over again. They will sink in!

  • ”It’s important how you play the game.”
  • ”How you play says something about who you are. If you cheat, you are dishonest. If you argue about calls, you are a whiner.”
  • Deliver messages in a non-judgmental, matter of fact way with no anger evident.

8. There are many ways you can encourage your child to participate in sport without forcing it.

  • Take them with you when you play…they want to be like you.
  • Make play fun.
  • Take them to watch others play. Buy books about sport.
  • Give gifts that say “I think you can do it!”

9. Get involved in their sport experience.

  • Join your child’s league governance, etc.
  • Make sure coaches and officials are certified and educated.

10. Select coaches who you respect, admire and trust.

  • Do not tolerate bad people…no matter how many games your child’s team wins.
  • Make sure the team your child plays on has children of similar skill.