Do Homeschooled Young Athletes Feel More Pressure to Win?

Helping Young Athletes Have More Fun 

Homeschooling And Youth Sports

When families completely re-structure their lives to meet the needs of young athletes, do the kids feel more pressure to perform?

At Kids’ Sports Psychology, we’ve found that the answer is often yes. When parents pull their kids out of school, they must change their work schedules to accommodate homeschooling.

When parents invest a lot of time and money into sports, schooling and travel resources, kids feel a greater need to “pay” parents back with better performance.

The advantage, on the other hand: Homeschooling allows kids to train more often and to travel, and there are fewer conflicts with school.

Is homeschooling worth it?

Do the benefits outweigh the disadvantages?

Andrea Leib, a former teacher, a sports parent to a motocross racer and founder of, an online school for young athletes who are being homeschooled, says the benefits are big.

However, kids need sports psychology and other resources to help them better cope with the pressures associated with their busy lives, she says.

Leib found that her son’s school did not accommodate her son’s motocross travel schedule. She wasn’t excited about homeschooling, but decided to give it a try. After a year or so, she created, an online private school that now has 75 students.

“Once students come over to our program and we can customize our programs for them, the pressure is lifted and they can excel,” she says. “Their confidence levels go up… If anyone feels more pressure, it’s the parents. It’s a big commitment for parents.”

Homeschooled kids need to feel as if they’re part of a team of parents, teachers and students, she says. They need to understand that they have to be just as disciplined in school as they are in sports, she says.
And it’s critical for kids to have access to sports psychology resources, she says. Young athletes need lots of confidence and composure to thrive at the national level.

Here at Kids’ Sports Psychology, we have a number of resources and tips for kids who feel pressured. For starters, we suggest that parents–whether they’re homeschooling or not–keep their own expectations in check.

Make sure you don’t impose your high expectations on your kids. That will feel like pressure. If you say something as simple as, “Make three goals today!” kids will likely twist this into “do or die” expectations.

In addition, it’s not a good idea to remind your kids that you’re putting a lot of money and time into their sports experience. They’ll feel like they must “pay” you back for your investment.

Instead, you should tell them that you enjoy being part of their sports experience and want to support them as much as possible.

Want to learn more about how to ensure you’re supporting your sports kids in the most constructive ways possible? At Kids’ Sports Psychology, exclusive members have access to the following resources:

  • “Homeschooling: Pressure for Young Athletes?” our audio interview with Leib.
  • “Kick Fear of Failure and Perfectionism,” eBooks written for parents and for sports kids.
  • “Helping Less Talented Siblings Cope with Pressure,” an article for sports parents.

Plus, we’ve got many, more downloadable eBooks, audios, videos, articles and question-and-answers.

*Subscribe to The Sports Psychology Podcast on iTunes
*Subscribe to The Sports Psychology Podcast on Spotify

Improve Your Mental Game From Anywhere In The World

We’re certain that, as a parent, you want to help your child develop confidence and discipline in sports and life. And as a sports parent, you’d love for your children to reach their potential in sports. But encouraging your child to strive for greatness without pressuring them can be a challenge.

You can get expert mental coaching with us from anywhere. Meet with us via Zoom, Skype, FaceTime or phone call. With today’s video technology, we are able to connect with athletes and coaches all over the globe.

Call Us Today to Schedule Your Free 15-Minute Session.
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