3-Pieces of Advice on youth sports from Professor Robyn Jones
1. Realise that learning and development take time. Of course, it’s necessary to be ready every week to perform and look for improvements in those performances, but of perhaps more importance, it’s vital to show patience with your players. we all want champions at 20-25 not 11-15.
2. All young athletes need great parental and home support; there is a great deal of supportive literature on this. However, that support means more than being overtly demanding of children. Sometimes, it can and should be manifest in being emotionally and socially supportive when things don’t go right, of constructively (emphasise constructively!!) challenging coaches when things aren’t understood, as leaving them alone sometimes to ‘find their own way’. Some thought is therefore required (from coaches and parents alike) as to what this support should like; after all, they all want the same thing.
3. Taking point 2 into account, young athletes also have to be constantly reminded to respect; to respect their coaches, parents, each other, themselves and…..the game. They have to learn and love the game the best they can, for no other reason than for the game itself. In short, they have to enjoy to play and understand that the play well they have to make sacrifices as well as recognising that others (as mentioned) make sacrifices for them.
Thank you Professor Robyn
The Sporting Influencer