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PARENTS WHO WANT THEIR CHILDREN TO BE COMPETITIVE IN SPORT, BUT ALWAYS TO DEMONSTRATE GOOD SPORTMANSHIP (EVEN WHEN THEY LOSE) MUST LEAD BY EXAMPLE
Whilst I encourage a winning, fighting, never-give-up spirit – I am desperate to ensure that my learners have fun doing it, and that they remain perfect ladies/gentleman on and off the court/sport field !!!
Here are a few “unofficial rules” that all parents of sporting children would do well to abide by = (Christina Castle)
- SUPPORT THE OFFICIAL: No matter what the decision, no matter if your child wins or loses, accept and respect the call or outcome. Most of our volunteers and school officials rarely receive positive words during or after an event. It is important that a child understand that officials are there to ensure that everyone follows the rules and that the game is played fairly and runs smoothly. Thanking an official after a game also goes a long way – and that goes for both you and your child. Equally important is the support officials receive during a post mortem of the game, on the ride home.
- ACCEPT A LOSS: One of the biggest lessons children learn through sport is how to “lose”. Some adults NEVER come to grips with it. The sooner you accept your child’s loss, the sooner they will too. Your child needs to learn how to lose or “fail” graciously. Winning graciously is just as important. And they watch your every move. My words to my learners are – “never a failure/loss – always a lesson gained/learnt”!!!!
- BE A PARENT / NOT A COACH: Post-mortems of our children’s sporting events are common practice. And while many of us think our input is important in helping them to improve, so often the reverse is true…… Children are completedly aware of how they performed and don’t need us to draw further attention to it. Not only do they feel as if they’ve let themselves down, they feel as if they’ve let YOU down as well. Leave the critique to the coach. Team talks after a match or at practice are where these points of play are discussed – without the emotion. You are there to pick up the pieces, celebrate or be a shoulder to cry on. Our children know we are there to support them – no matter how they’ve played.
- CHEER ALL CHILDREN (NO MATTER WHAT TEAM OR WHO THEY ARE PLAYING): Acknowledging great effort and clever play, regardless of who does it, is a fine example of good sportsmanship that children should witness. This positive display shows an appreciation and enjoyment of the game, rather than focusing on the end result – win or lose. It is, however, easy to focus on your child’s individual performance (even if they may be playing in a team). Unfortunately, it is likely to be perceived as showing disrespect to the opposition as a whole. Rather get to know the names of the other children and cheer for them equally.
- TALK TO “THE ENEMY”: I talk to anyone – and that said, I’ve noticed that some people are not so keen to talk to me! They might be supporting the opposition, but they are also parents who care about their children. By showing our children that we can interact, congratulate and commiserate with supporter of the opposition, we are teaching them to do the same. Befriending other parents is a lot easier than we think.
We cry for it.
We cheer for it.
We bleed for it.
We sweat for it.
We ache for it
At the end of the day….. we do it because we l♥ve it