Psycho coaches… nightmare parents… cheating… screaming…bribing Ah, the joys of youth sports! Sports have the potential to enhance the lives of our children, yet somewhere along the way things have gone a little warped and we’re just as likely (if not more so) to turn out ego-driven athletes, desperate for attention and acclaim, who will do anything to win, as we are to turn out amazing human beings.
If we want young people to reach their potential, both as athletes and as people, it’s NOT going to be through yelling, screaming, threats, bribes and punishments. It’s NOT going to be because they are scared to lose (because they only feel worthy if they win). It IS going to be because they feel empowered and internally driven to shine and get the best out of themselves. It will be because they have learned to and were trusted to make decisions. It will be because they were taught to pay attention to their feelings and how to manage them, so they can get themselves into “the zone”. It will be because it’s FUN!!!
Youth sports need a makeover and I want to do it!
I’ll do this by conducting workshops for coaches and parents of athletes, teaching them tools (effective communication, motivation without the use of punishments and rewards, creating a mastery environment, how to stay calm and connected) so they can help young people thrive.
I’d love to also provide an online resource to spread this worldwide.
In my ideal world, I’d get this philosophy into every organization involved with young people and sports- into clubs, volunteer rec leagues, classes, and camps. I want youth sports to be fun again- for everyone!
Funded by LA South Bay, CA (February 2014)