Parents of young soccer players strive to be consistently supportive and enthusiastic of their kids’ athletic endeavors. While it sounds relatively simple to remain appropriately engaged in youth soccer, parenting young athletes can often become challenging and complicated. Soccer, like many other sports, has its fair share of highs and lows. Therefore, parents often find themselves responsible for keeping their kids passionate and enthusiastic while steadying their emotions and keeping them calm. Parents are incredibly influential where their children’s sports careers are concerned, so it is crucial to support your kids reasonably while remaining calm and positive. Read on to learn some research-backed methods on how you can be the best, most supportive soccer parent for your young soccer star.
Set Good Examples
Parents are responsible for continually setting good examples for their children. Whether it is on the soccer field, in the gym, or at the dinner table, kids look to their caretakers to learn how to maintain healthy lifestyles, constructive communication skills, positive attitudes, and much more.
On the soccer field, kids regularly watch their parents closely and listen to them carefully. Further, children often model the behavior demonstrated by their parents, whether positive or negative. As such, parents must attempt to consistently display good sportsmanship and positive emotions amongst themselves to ensure their young athletes perform appropriately and with continued integrity.
Soccer training is arguably more important than games and tournament performances. Beyond organized practices and thrive reviews, children must learn the importance of working hard when no one is watching them. This lesson is yet another critical element of setting good examples for your young athletes. The earlier kids learn the significance of individual dedication and hard work, the more successful they will be in the long run.
Soccer is enjoyable, entertaining, and exciting. While competition and team rivals are also an inevitable element of any young athlete’s career, they should never overshadow the delight that youth soccer brings to its players.
Initially, it is vital to teach your young children to respect the sport, their team, and their coaches. Remember that sportsmanship is reflected in many areas of the game. It is just as important for playing on the field to be good sports as it is for players on the bench. Good attitudes are contagious, so always encourage your child to be respectful and positive towards their teammates and opponents to maintain team integrity. Again, children model their parents’ behaviors, so remaining consistently positive and supportive will hopefully create respectful, thoughtful, and considerate athletes.
Practice With Them
Individual training is essential in athletic development, so be sure to encourage your children to practice at home. If they are open to it, join them on their solo training missions. Your involvement can include retrieving balls, standing in as goalkeeper, or setting up cones for footwork drills.
Always ask your child before you join them for a training session. Some children prefer to work alone and are distracted by a parent, so be respectful of your kid’s wishes. Further, maintain a motivational attitude without pushing. Let any desire for additional practice come from your child, not from you. This way, soccer practice will remain fun and exciting rather than feeling like an unpleasant chore.
Know the Coach
Make it a point to get to know your child’s soccer coach. Establish a relationship with him or her, and ensure that the coach’s philosophy and temperament are a good match for your kid. Coaches have an incredible amount of influence on their players, so be sure this influence is both positive and encouraging.
Establishing a good relationship with your child’s coach upfront will make it easy to ask questions and communicate effectively in the future. Issues, whether large or small, will inevitably arise. That said, maintaining a healthy rapport with the coach will make discussing future problems painless and uncomplicated.
Youth soccer is an excellent experience for young players and their parents alike. Always maintain a positive, encouraging attitude to ensure your children grow up to exhibit good sportsmanship while on and off the soccer field.