11 Ways You Become a Better Parent When Your Child Plays Youth Sports

11 Ways You Become a Better Parent When Your Child Plays Youth Sports

Sometimes kids are not the only ones who develop character when they play sports.  Parents,too, can learn from their children's sports experiences. After 20 years of being a sports mom, I know that I have become a better parent. What do you think? Have you learned any of these sports parenting lessons?

I learned when to keep my mouth shut
Sometimes your kids don't want questions after practice or after a game. You gotta know your kid and let them talk when they are ready. And then, be ready to listen.

I learned that my worrying doesn't help them play better
It just gives me a nervous stomach!

I learned to not be a control freak
Let them fight their own battles. Let them learn from their mistakes. Let them reap what they sow. Let them suffer the consequences of their choices.

I learned that what I model at home is what my kids model before their teammates
If I trash talk teammates or coaches, they will most likely do the same. But if I am positive and build up the team and coach, they are more likely to reflect that to their team.

I learned to let the coach be the coach, and I will be the parent
He has his job; I have mine. Tips and help at home are okay when asked, but pushing my kids like a coach only added tension to our relationship.

I learned that being positive helped me have a better relationship with my kids
Sometimes I was a "negative nancy" and when I saw how this frustrated my kids, I knew I had to work on my attitude!

I learned that kids want me to be their fan, but they don't want me to embarrass them at games
Enough said.

I learned how ridiculous I look when I rant at the refs
And how did I learn that? By seeing how other parents look when they rant, and cringing as I remember how I screamed at the refs just the game before.

I learned that sometimes it's okay to step into the fight
I've calmly approached refs after the game and expressed my discontent at their call. As a coach, my husband was thrown out of a game for defending his players. There is a time and a place for our kids to know that we are on their side.

I learned to love my kids no matter how they perform
If they had a bad game, they know it and don't need any reminders from me. They just need my support and unconditional love.

I learned to respect their choices of when to play a sport and when to move on
Even though we may have been disappointed that they gave up a sport, especially when they were good players, we knew that if they didn’t have the desire to play, it would be a season of battles and negative attitudes.

These are 11 lessons I wish I had learned before my kids started playing sports! But hey, now I'm ready for sports grandparenting!

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