When Sports Kids Don’t Get Enough Playing Time

When Athletes Worry About Being Judged

Playing Time in Youth Sports

When sports kids don’t get enough playing time, it can really hurt their confidence, motivation, and self-esteem.

They feel as if the coaches don’t value them. They worry that they’re doing everything wrong.

As sports parents, you can help your young athletes when they feel this way.

First of all, if you believe the coach is favoring other kids over your child, you could talk to the coach.

Caution: Don’t blame or criticize the coach. Say something like, “We’re wondering what Sarah needs to do to get more playing time. Where does she need to improve?”

You could then help your child work on those skills.

In addition, help your young athletes focus on playing well when they do play— and make the most of every moment.

That means teaching them to just “go for it” and take risks. Why? They may be worried about what the coach thinks of their every move—and may play it safe.

But playing it safe leads to mediocre performances—and more important, kids don’t learn anything!

Be sure to tell them that their playing time does not reflect their worth as a person (self-esteem).

If, after talking to the coach and helping your young athletes focus on what the coach wants them to improve on, you may feel as if your athletes’ confidence is still low.

You might consider moving your child or children to teams that focus on giving equal playing time.

Some experts say that such teams boost kids’ confidence and self-esteem—and focus on what’s most important in sports: having fun.

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The Composed Sports Kid

“The Composed Sports Kid” audio and workbook digital download program for young athletes and their parents or coach helps kids cope with frustration and anger in sports. Help your sports kids learn how to manage expectations and let go of mistakes so they can keep their head in the game. 

The Composed Sports Kid system is really two programs in one–one program to train parents and coaches how to help their kids practice composure, and one program that teaches young athletes–ages 6 to 13–how to improve composure, let go of mistakes quickly, have more self-acceptance, and thus enjoy sports more

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