When your children begin participating in competitive sports, you see the need to help them be a good sport. While we always want our kids to do their best, we also need to make sure we are not encouraging poor attitudes in the process. Teaching Your Kids Good Sportsmanship is so important to the overall quality of their experience as part of a team. Not only will they learn to win with grace, they will learn how to deal with the disappointment of loss.
TEACHING YOUR KIDS GOOD SPORTSMANSHIP
Be A Good Example: Nothing makes a bigger impact than showing your children by example. Whether it is participation on your own sports team, or simply how you react when your favorite team is the winner or loser – your reaction goes a long way toward showing them how to react. Check yourself before you wreck yourself. Seriously – remember to check your attitude and actions to make sure you are being a good example to them of the right kind of behavior.
Push Them To Grow And Learn – Not Conquer: There is a big difference between teaching your kids to conquer everything and teaching them to grow and learn. Make sure they know that winning is part of being on a team, but the team is there to teach them how to play the sport better. Put your emphasis on growth and improvement instead of always being the absolute best.
Reward Them For Good Attitudes: Don’t just celebrate big when the team wins. Celebrate when your child shows a great attitude and good sportsmanship after a loss. Also make sure to encourage them to keep the good attitude when another team loses. Being kind to the losing team and encouraging them is just as important as not being a sore loser.
Don’t Allow The Negativity: Whether it is a poor attitude about their own performance, or that of another team mate, don’t allow negativity. It is fine to be sad, or upset about a loss. It is not okay to treat those around you poorly in the process, nor belittle others.
Teaching your kids good sportsmanship is one of the most important things you can do as a parent. Not only will it help them I their current life, it will help them grow in the future. We all face losses in our lives. Jobs, relationships, sports, events and disappointments will follow us throughout our lifetime. Building a good attitude of sportsmanship at an early age will help your children now and throughout their lives.
We had an experience this fall that I wanted to share with you. I wrote this on the soccer field right after it happened on the note pad on my phone.
Dear Lady in the Pink Dress,
It is not OK to yell to your kid after he gets called with a foul to keep it up. It is not OK to yell, “keep pushing, harder next time”. What are you teaching your son? What kind of role model are you being to not only your kid but to every child on the field.
So after hearing you YELL, SCREAM, jumping out of your chair like a crazy lunatic my son comes off the field at the end of the game. I say, “great game Peyton” and give him a high five and he replies….”Did you hear the lady in the pink dress?”
Yes, buddy, I replied. I am pretty sure every heard her. And he said….man, I feel sorry for her kid. I replied. “Me too bud”.
It is not OK to tell your kids to foul and it is not OK to justify a foul for any reason. I am thankful that the lady int he pink dress is not on our team and hopefully we won’t have to run into a again. Though, I know we will. If you are reading this and you are a sports parent please consider the messages that you are sending.
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