Postgame Communication With Sports Kids
Parents, even when the game is over, you need to be careful about how you communicate with your young athletes.
Often, parents are tempted to harp on sports kids’ mistakes after a game.
In the first in a series of podcasts, mental game expert Dr. Patrick Cohn gives parents some tips for ensuring they boost their kids’ conbfidence after a game.
“One of the no-nos for parents is to harp on mistakes. They are well meaning when they say things like ‘Why did you miss that shot,’ or ‘Why did you miss that three footer?’ says Dr. Cohn.
“When you focus on the mistakes, it causes athletes to focus on mistakes.”
And that’s not what you want. When athletes concentrate on their mistakes, their confidence sinks.
In addition, parents should let kids cool down after a game. And they should let themselves cool down, too, says Dr. Cohn. Don’t jump in right after the game and start talking about it.
“Let their emotions settle down. Parents are excited. Athletes are still physiologically intense and have emotions about the game. Observe that cool-down period,” he suggests.
If kids want to talk about the game, listen to them. But after a few minutes, try to transition them out of the role of the athlete into other areas of their lives, he says.
They have to learn how to make that transition.
After a game, be careful especially about how you communicate with perfectionist athletes. “If you start harping on their mistakes, they’ll feel like they’re not good enough,” says Dr. Cohn. “It’s like adding insult to injury.” These kids are already harping on their mistakes.
Want to learn more about how to boost kids’ confidence after a game? You can listen to our podcast, the first in a series of post-game tips, here:
Listen to Our Podcast About Post-Game Tips for Sports Parents here:
What do parents and coaches say about our resources?
“Every Sports Parent Needs This (Ultimate Sports Parent Radio Podcast): I really enjoyed this podcast. The information is essential if your kids participate in sports. You learn how to respond to your kids and deal with many of the issues that parents face.” ~Sports Parent
Help your kids build confidence in youth sports and avoid mental game challenges!
At Kids’ Sports Psychology, we’ve got loads of other resources for you—Ebooks, additional audios, videos—all designed to help you boost your kids’ confidence.
Here’s what parents and coaches have to say about our resources:
“I have listened to the program twice and I think the information is valuable. I’ve always heard and read that we need to be positive with our young athletes. However, this program provides great value because it gives specific ‘how to’s’ with regards as to how to be positive as a parent as well as how to get your young athletes to think positive.”
~Jay Morrissey Sr., Sports Parent
Be sure to help your kids boost their confidence in sports—and life!
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What are parents saying?
“Your Information Had Been So Helpful”
“After listening to a couple of your podcasts and reading your “10 tips to confidence in youth sports,” most of the challenges you make note of apply to my 14-year-old son. He’s got all the physical ability, but the more mistakes he makes, the worse it seems to get. So reading and listening to your information has been so helpful and validates what I have observed in him for the past few months. Thank you so much!”
~Brenda Felder, Everett, WA