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Archive for July, 2007


Should Parents Watch Sports Practices?

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Your TurnParents, do you stay and watch every one of your athlete’s practices? Depending on your child and their training situation, technically there is no right or wrong answer, but I’m going to give you my opinion anyhow.

Assuming your child is in a training situation which is healthy, safe and well supervised (which it should be), I don’t see any benefit to staying and watching every one of your child’s practices. Here’s why:

  • As a parent, if you watch every practice you are less likely to see the gradual improvements that your child is achieving every day. Stay and watch once a month or so and you will be amazed with your daughter’s progress.
  • Your child needs to learn to interact with other adults and her teammates without looking to you for approval/disapproval at every turn. For most children, the lure of looking out into the audience for parental approval after every turn is just too great.
  • Certainly you have something more productive to do with your time – take a walk, go work out, do errands, or better yet, carpool so you only have driving duties one way giving you more time to do other tasks.

Some of the gyms I have coached at in the past (before I had kids of my own) actually had “no-watch” policies. I don’t agree with that philosophy either. As a parent paying tuition or players fees, it is your right to observe what your child is learning. Additionally, I would be very cautious allowing my child to participate in a program that regularly held closed practices unless there were multiple coaches that I knew well and trusted present at all times.

Years ago I had a student who’s Mother watched every practice. She would sit in the stands and count how many turns each child took and if her child got any fewer turns than anyone else, she would make a point of letting me know after practice. She was constantly comparing her daughter’s progress to the other girls and it put a lot of unnecessary pressure on her daughter.

On the other hand, there are a few situations where I highly recommend you stay and observe (or at least be close by).

  • If your daughter is taking a private lesson with coach, there should always be at least one other ADULT present at all times.
  • If your daughter is new to the class/team or just returning from an injury.
  • If you or your daughter is not completely comfortable with the training situation.

I would really like to hear your opinion! Leave me a comment and let me know whether you think parents should stay and watch every practice or not, and why.


Categories : Coaching, Parenting
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Speedlinking 7-28-07

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It’s been a busy week here, but I have still found time to get out and visit some of my favorite sites. Here are some articles from this past week that I found interesting or useful.

  • The Odds of Getting a Sports Scholarship at Connect with Kids
  • Funding for Women in Sport from the Womens Sports Foundation (Thanks Gymnastics Coaching for sharing)
  • Check out the Medals from Rio 2007 – Light the Torch has a great photo of the medals from the PanAm Games
  • Golf Girl’s Diary has some great photos of Michelle Wie and other cool golf gear


Categories : Uncategorized
Comments (0) has just released a really interesting behind the scenes interview with US National Rowing Team Member, Anna Goodale. Find out how she trains, where she trains, and what it takes to be a world class rower.


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