It is important to have a love of the game. You can’t make it to the top on talent alone. Hard work isn’t enough either. You need to love it.
One of the greatest lessons we can teach our kids is adaptability, or the ability to overcome and to view life as a growing opportunity. To learn more on this subject read the book Mindset by Carol Dweck.
Drop your kids of at the tournament, check them in and go get a coffee! Take a couple hours off, read the paper and enjoy your morning! Most of you do need a day off too! What if your child has the best match of his life and you weren’t there to see it? Miss…
The #1 reason kids drop out of youth sports is that is it not fun anymore! It would be insane NOT to pay attention to the number one reason your child wouldn’t want to play anymore.
Do not talk to your child about their match for 24 hours after its over. Wise parents know that “timeout” is for them as much as their child. It’s a time for parents to cool down, to think, to come up with something constructive to say instead of ripping into their kid(s).
The most important communication skill to learn in dealing with young athletes is a coaching sandwich. A coaching sandwich is a positive, with a correction, followed by another positive.
Mistakes happen! So what? It’s part of the learning process. Or it should be. Depending on how you react to it is part of the “this is not fun anymore” story leading to kids, your kids, dropping out. Relax! Don’t over-react.
Asking your child questions about their participation in tennis is a great way to check to see where they are the map instead of making assumptions. Some good questions: “What did you learn today?” “How did you feel about it?” “What would you do differently” & “Did you have fun?”
The best performance for an athlete comes from playing in the zone. The best way to get them out of this state is to make comments from the stands and draw their attention away from the match.
Challenges from the stands are not appropriate and are an embarrassment to your kids. That one point most likely didn’t cost them the match. Even if the call was incorrect, use it as a teaching opportunity for your child.