THE SPORTING INFLUENCER

Introduction

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According to Clark, (2008); Kremer-Sadlik & Kim, (2007) within any given sport parent(s) have been highlighted as one of the major influences in a child’s level of enjoyment and participation. Having coaches youth and men’s soccer for a number of years, I’ve encountered and observed a mixture of positive e.g. Positive – encouragement, positive reinforcement, no pressure placed upon winning and Negative – aggressive sideline behavior, dictating players decision making. The effects of each approach have been discussed in the Helpful and Harmful E-Book, how to deal these matters as a coach will be discussed within future blog posts.

With soccer players continually evolving into multi-millionnaires and living luxury lifestyles, a minority of parents expect their child to reach those levels from an early age. In turn, creates unnecessary pressure and unrealistic expectations on those young players participating, which results in an overly-involved parents within youth sport. On the contrast some parents do recongise and more importantly understand the long term player development model (LTPD). Those positive parents are engaged, willing and open to understand how to become a positive sporting influencer, thus increasing a child’s enjoyment in the game.

These blogs will highlight and share positive and negative contributions and potentially educate coaches about how to deal with an array of matters and/or concerns within the coaching environment. I wish to clarify that any suggestions that are made, must be carefully replicated and in most cases adapted to one’s environment and individual and/or team communicating with. I must reiterate “one size fits all” doesn’t apply in this context

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