Sports parents are regularly challenged when it comes to keeping their emotions in check, especially during those times where a referee makes a bad call, or when it’s their child on the field making mistakes that they never make in practice (Sport Success 360). Lets face it, the sport experience is an emotional experience, and it’s quite normal to feel happy one moment, and frustrated the next. Still, if you are one of “those parents” who regularly loses his cool, shouts profanities, or worse yet — actually resorts to physical aggression (i.e. fighting with the coach or another parent, breaking things, etc.) then please read on…..
While it’s perfectly normal to feel different emotions while watching your child compete in sports, it’s not normal (or acceptable) to berate, belittle, humiliate, embarrass, or physically hurt anyone while at the game! Don’t get me wrong, it makes sense to feel upset when your child makes a bad play or the umpire blows a call, but it’s not acceptable to allow your emotions to take over to the point where it ruins the overall experience for everyone involved — especially your child.
While some parents may laugh or scoff at the idea of seeking professional sport psychology counseling related to sideline “blowups,” in some cases this might be exactly what is needed in order to prevent future problems from occurring. Check to see how you stack up by answering the following questions:
- You have a history of “losing your cool” at games, as evidenced by obscene gestures, profane language, or physical aggression toward others or school/league property (i.e. kicking over a trash can)
- Your aggressive behavior seems to be becoming the norm, and is not just one incident a long time ago that will likely never happen again
- You over-value your child’s worth and importance related to sports and at the expense of many of her other wonderful qualities – like school achievements, music, art, or other accomplishments
- You have been talked to about your sideline behavior by the coach, other parents, or the AD/league operator
- Watching your kid play sports has become distressful, so much so that you seem to be more angry, frustrated, and upset while watching the games than you are actually enjoying being there
Of course, not every sports parent needs to seek sport psychology assistance, but increasingly more parents do seem to have trouble keeping their emotions in check – hence the reason for today’s encouragement to seek help. With so many more kids starting sports early, specializing, and playing their sport year-round, parents are investing more time, energy, and money into their child’s sport experience – often leaving them emotionally vulnerable for when things don’t work out as planned.
Check out our parent products designed to help you and your family maximize the athletic experience – visit Advanced Human Performance Systems to learn more!