We have all been there before. Maybe you got a bit excited about your kids soccer game. You enthusiastically were cheering or maybe it was more like yelling, just a bit too much. We have all done it, got caught up in the moment of supporting your kid playing soccer at age 8. So for all of the sideline parents out there, which one are you? With NCAA Division I opportunities at your door (only kidding), you got caught up in the moment. It is ok, read on.
Well the first step to recovery is to admit you have a problem.
For fun, we wanted to see which sideline parent you are so we came up with a list. Did we miss any? We love our parents and all that they do, even their passion on the sidelines :-). They truly make sacrifices so we can keep playing and are always trying to help our youth sports athletes.
So which sideline parent are you?
The Yeller Sideline Parents
There are always a couple parents that yell the whole time. They are always yelling something, usually the wrong directions to their player. Sometimes they just yell at their player or at the coach or at the ref. In some cases, they yell at everyone if things don’t go their kids way.
The Hider (aka – just want to watch my player play) Sideline Parents
Are you the parent that hides from other parents? Ha! We caught you. Maybe you stand alone, maybe you just want to enjoy the game and not get caught up in the crazy world of youth sports. It is ok, hide away and just pat your player on the back when they are done then grab some ice cream.
The “Coach” Sideline Parents
“Pass the ball!” Are you the parent that feels the need to coach from the sideline? As a youth sports coach of field hockey, basketball, softball and lacrosse, it was always a tough situation. Just remember that we are coaching too and sometimes you may not have the whole picture of what is best for the team. Trust your coach and the process. Our goal is always to have your player in mind.
The Snack Provider Sideline Parents
When my son was 5 years old, he played soccer. It was easy to sign up and kept him running around for 2 hours. Well he hated it, but I was mad I spent $75 on the program and made him stick it out. His favorite part was snack time and usually there were grapes. If you are the snack parent, thank you for keeping the 10 minutes in the middle or end of practice and games for snacks. It made the 2 hours of practice less miserable (lol).
The Car Ride Home Sideline Parents
This parent can’t wait to say something on the car ride home. There have been numerous articles about the ride home and the impact on players. Sometimes it is ok to say nothing. Or just wait until your player wants to talk. And sometimes ice cream helps everything. Make a new ritual of getting their favorite snack so every time they play, you have something fun to do after the game.
It IS all fun and games! All of us at iSport360 are youth sports parents and volunteer coaches. We have seen it all and have even been one of the parents above.
What can you help your player with so they feel confident on and off the field?
- Your player will make mistakes during a game, just get over it
- Your player may not have a great game or tournament, they aren’t robots
- Make it fun for your player, something little goes a long way
- Always say you are proud
- Don’t tell them what to do, let the coaches coach
- Encourage your player to advocate for themselves
Do you have any other parents that you have noticed in the stands? Let us know.
At iSport360, we have been all of these parents at one time or another. We love to watch our kids play and we love to coach our kids too. A special thanks to all of our youth sports parents making those sacrifices for their athlete every day. Have fun!