Is it possible that your child is too serious about sports?
A sports parent asks:
My son is so obsessed with hockey; he gets very upset when he doesn’t do well and seems to take it all so seriously. How do you know when your child is taking his sport too seriously?
My kids were all pretty serious about their sports. But we always tried to maintain some sort of balance in our home to keep them from getting too serious. Keep a eye out for these signs of sports obsessiveness:
1. Your child insists on playing injured, against all advice. Obviously, when your child is younger, you have more to say, but the older he gets, the harder it will be if he is bent on disobeying the doctor’s advice.
2. Your child doesn’t take the time to just PLAY. You know, like video games? Or fishing? Or bike riding? Or anything that has nothing to do with his sport.
3. Your athlete shows signs of stress. These included loss of appetite, bad sleeping habits, grades suffering. You know your child’s stress signals.
4. Your child can’t get over a loss. Good athletes learn to let go of a loss and move on. But if your child agonizes too much and too long over a loss or bad game, he may be a little too caught up in the competition.
5. Your athlete is way to hard on himself and his team mates.There is a fine line between being realistic about your game and being overly critical of yourself and your team mates. A critical spirit tears down team unity and increases frustration in your athlete.
6. Your child shows apathy in other areas. Are her grades suffering? Does she not care about other friendships simply because they are not athletic? Is he tuning out his family and friends?
It is important as your kids start and continue on in their sports journey, that parents intentionally seek balance in the home. Sports can be important, they can eat up a huge chunk of your family’s time, and that’s all okay. But be sure that your child has a life outside of sports too.
Do you have a sports parenting question? Leave a comment or email me a firstname.lastname@example.org.