Sport Parents: Do You Pressure Your Young Athletes?
Youth coach Doug Donaldson says he knows intuitively when one of his young athletes feels pressured by a parent’s expectations. And he also knows the problems such well-meaning expectations can create in young athletes.
For example, one of his player’s mothers wants the child to play goalie in Lacrosse. But when the mother isn’t listening, the boy says he wants to play defense. “It’s a real quandary for him. He’s looking for Mom and worrying about what Mom thinks.”
Donaldson says he can sense when his young athletes are driven to do something to meet their parents’ expectations. They feel pressured. “This affects their passion and their interest,” he says.
How do parents’ and coaches’ expectations affect kids’ passion and interest? Not in good ways. Not in ways that improve their mental game–or performance.
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