As the fall sports season starts to wind up, be sure to prepare your sports kids for potential bullying from other athletes and coaches.
Sadly, there’s an epidemic of bullying in sports right now.
The worst part of it: Children are reluctant to tell their parents they’re being bullied.
All kinds of kids are bullied in sports. Talented kids can spark jealousy and get targeted.
Newer players, smaller kids, big children, and just about anyone are at risk to be bullied.
Bullies will exclude kids socially (this is called relational aggression), threaten them, tease them, and harass them.
What’s the best thing for you as parents to do?
Be sure to keep the lines of communication open.
Talk about bullying before the season starts and tell your children that they shouldn’t be ashamed or embarrassed if someone bullies them; it happens to all kinds of kids.
Encourage them to talk to you if they’re bullied.
You can also keep a watchful eye out by attending games and seeing how the team interacts.
A good coach will create a culture that prohibits bullying and encourages teamwork and positive communication.
You can check out our program, “Helping Young Athletes Stay Confident and Mentally Tough in the Face of Bullies”