Why do girls drop out of sports more often than boys? Nancy Lough, a professor at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, says that girls drop out for numerous reasons--and some are related to gender stereotypes. “If you think about it from a social standpoint, there are a lot of messages for girls: ‘This isn’t the place for you,’” she says. Girls are told they should be pretty not powerful. … [Read more...] about Why Girls Drop out of Sports More Often than Boys
How Young Athletes can Cope with Stress The pressures of modern youth sports are creating stress related mental health issues in young athletes. But there’s a non-traditional way of addressing this stress. That’s what we learned during a podcast interview with Bradley Donohue, a psychology professor at University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), and director of The Optimum Performance Program in … [Read more...] about Anxiety, Depression on Rise in Youth Sports
Do Parents Pressure Kids to be Superstars? In the world of youth sports, we focus too much on “the next big thing”, creating high expectations. Eighth grade basketball player Elijah Fisher has been described by his coach at Grassroots Elite (Canada), “Elijah could be the best player to ever come out of Canada.” Some have said of high school junior quarterback Eli Brickhandler, “He’s the … [Read more...] about Why Adults Shouldn’t Heap Superstar Expectations on Sports Kids
What to Say on the Car Ride Home After the Game This week, we are following up on a video we shared last week about "The Car Ride Home". We provide tips on how parents can help kids feel confident after the game… Sports parents often unwittingly make the mistake of hurting their kids confidence after a game or competition. This often happens during the car ride home, or even before kids … [Read more...] about What to Do or Say After Your Athletes Compete?
How to Handle Pressure In youth sports, it’s important for your young athletes to trust their intuition and focus on play. In an interview with Mohammed Almarzouq, 27, from Saudi Arabia, a multi-year American Ninja Warrior competitor and coach at Skyhook Ninja Fitness, we discussed how having a playful attitude helped him compete. “The first time I was on American Ninja Warrior, it was the … [Read more...] about The Importance of Playfulness and Trust in Youth Sports
A viral video, “The Ride Home,” by True Sport Pur, generated many interesting comments from college and professional athletes. The video shows--on the car ride home--a dad scolding his child for not working hard enough, and the young boy doesn’t respond, but looks very sad. The caption to the video from True Sport Pur: “Seventy percent of kids quit sports before high school. How we talk to … [Read more...] about Are Parents Too Soft on Sports Kids?
How to be a Successful Sports Parent A parent asks us how parents of successful athletes have been involved in their athletes’ sports experience. The most well-known example is Tiger Woods’ father. Earl Woods started teaching Tiger how to play golf before the age of two years old and coached him exclusively until the age of five, then hired a PGA club professional to help with Tiger’s … [Read more...] about What Do Parents of Successful Athletes Do Right?
“How to Win Wimbledon in Pajamas” Mary Nhin’s son, Kobe, began competing in tennis a couple of years ago and was winning most of his games… until he hit a cold streak. “He began going into super tiebreakers, a very short determining point system, and he would get very nervous, and he would end up losing,” says Nhin, the co-author, along with Kobe, of “How to Win the Wimbledon in … [Read more...] about Using Sports Psychology to Overcome a Cold Streak
Richard Burke, who has been coaching baseball, football and basketball for the last 12 years, recently told us how he used our Ultimate Sports Parent program to help a perfectionist pitcher. “I had a 10-year-old pitcher playing on an 11-year-old travel team. He was doing really well, but once I got to know him I found out he was very much a perfectionist,” Burke said. “From time to … [Read more...] about How One Coach Helped a Perfectionist Athlete
Comparisons Hurt Athletes’ Confidence When we surveyed parents, we found that 23% said that kids judge how their teammates are performing instead of focusing on their own play. Focusing on others’ play will distract your young athletes from their own game, and can become a major confidence killer. In the survey, parents said that kids compare themselves when they have friends who are … [Read more...] about How to Avoid Comparison Trap for Sports Parents