Instilling Positivity in Youth Sports We recently spoke with KC Wilder, a former collegiate All-American in cycling, a mental training coach and Positive Coaching Alliance trainer. "Young athletes are likely to be happier in a positive environment," says Wilder, who is also a sports mom. "We are raising confidence and lowering anxiety in an environment where the athlete feels safe," she … [Read more...] about How To Be Relentlessly Positive In Youth Sports [Podcast]
Can Young Athletes Learn Mental Skills? We think it's never too early to educate young athletes on mental game principles that will help instill confidence and success in sports as they grow older. Providing a foundation of mental skills can help your young athletes understand the importance of a good mindset as they progress to higher levels of competition. As you know, we produced the … [Read more...] about Can Athletes 5-10 Years Old Learn Mental Skills for Success?
Coming Back After Injuries in Youth Sports One sports mom writes us to say her 12-year-old soccer player is too timid, backs off too often, dwells on her weaknesses, and performs better in practice than during games. Part of the problem, the sports mom says, is that her daughter is coming back from an injury. “She seemed scared to get back to play, not because of injuries, but I think it was … [Read more...] about Teaching Sports Kids to “Go For It” When They Lack Confidence
Social Approval in Sports Kids Sports kids worry about what their friends will think when they lose a ball, commit a turnover, or goof up. And that’s just the beginning of young athletes’ worries. They worry about what coaches and friends will think when their parents yell on the sidelines. They worry about impressing relatives who come to games. The list of worries goes on and on. Here’s … [Read more...] about Helping Sports Kids Who Worry About What Everyone Thinks of Them
External Distractions For Sports Kids When kids are distracted by the disagreements they have with their friends, opponents or coaches, they don’t perform well in sports. They don’t enjoy it as much or learn as much. If they’re thinking about fighting over a guy, or being angry with a friend, or disagreeing with their parents, they’re not focused on the thoughts, feelings, targets or other … [Read more...] about Helping Sports Kids Resolve Conflict to Boost Performance
The Focused Sports Kid How often do coaches or parents say to their sports kids, “You need to focus! Get your head in the game!” All the time! The truth is, most sports kids get distracted. And when you hear the refrain, “Focus! Get your head in the game,” it’s because your sports kids aren’t performing up to their abilities. They’re not concentrating on what’s needed to ensure they … [Read more...] about Help Kids Focus and Succeed–The Focused Sports Kid
Handling Bullying in Youth Sports Should parents try to reason with bully coaches? Should they try to talk to athletes who bully their kids in sports? Should they move their kids to different schools as a result of bullying in sports? These are just some of the many questions we get about bullying in youth sports. In fact, it’s the top issue parents write us about. To help all these … [Read more...] about Should Parents Try to Reason with Bully Coaches?
Sports Parents Influence on Kids Let’s face it: The world of sports evokes lots of emotion. That’s partially why we love sports so much. But as sports parents, your emotional state affects your kids’ confidence in sports. In fact, if you can’t keep your feelings under control, your athletes might not thrive in sports. That’s the word from Anthony Ross, a sport psychologist, former All-American … [Read more...] about How Parents’ Emotions Affect Sports Kids
Dealing With Perfectionism in Sports Kids Just how frustrating is it for parents when a child isn’t having fun in sports because he’s a perfectionist? A reader tells us: “Practically all of the emails I have received from you (about perfectionism) could have been written about my son...." "He is afraid of failure and afraid to make a mistake….He never seems happy, ever…Needless to say, my … [Read more...] about The Frustration and Heartache of Parenting a Sports Perfectionist
Sports Parents: Dealing With Bullied Kids A fuming sports mom recently asked us what to do to help her daughter, a talented athlete who was passed up for a slot on the Varsity Team and is now being bullied by the girls who made the team. "I have noticed my daughter's confidence slip - both on and off the field. The Varsity players treat the others like rubbish, including a freshman who has no … [Read more...] about Helping Kids Stay Confident in the Face of Adversity