Being a Good Soccer Parent
If you have spent any time around the soccer fields at all, you’ve probably noticed the variety of personalities that exist within the parents of the players. You’ve seen everything from parents who drop off their kids and leave, to parents who watch and quietly comment, to parents who live every second through their kids. Regardless of your personality, as a soccer parent you must understand one very important fact – you can, through your words and actions, enhance your child’s soccer experience, OR can ruin the experience for the entire team. The choice is yours.
Understand Your Role As a Soccer Parent
The best way for you to understand your role is to first understand what your role is not.
What IS your role? You are the spectator, cheerleader and proud parent. Watch the game and enjoy it. Don’t give instructions to the players while they are on the field as this only confuses them. Soccer is a game that develops according to the situations on the field. If you or a coach continually yell instructions, then the only thing your child will learn is to wait for instructions and do what she is told. For your child to grow into a good soccer player she must develop the ability to recognize situations and make decisions on the field. Let her do this and let the game reward her for making the right decisions.
Ex. Your daughter has the ball in front of the opposing team’s goal. Should you yell shoot? No. If she shoots and scores she will be rewarded for her actions and if she doesn’t shoot and has the ball taken away she will learn that next time she should shoot.
If you follow this outline, you will greatly improve your child’s soccer growth as well as your family’s overall enjoyment of the soccer experience. You will also make yourself a favourite parent among soccer coaches. This can often be a deciding factor if your child makes a select team. Often kids who are very good soccer players, are not selected for a team because the coach does not want to put up with the child’s obnoxious parent
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