Bob Katz, a journalist, former sports dad and author of he kids’ book “EZ and the Intangibles” shares why he believes sports parents should drop the sports fan mindset.
Katz argues that the informality and fun integral to sports kids’ learning is being eclipsed by intensity and criticism that should be postponed to much later in life.
“8-to-10-year-olds should not be encountering the sports world the way multi-million dollar superstars do, with that kind of criticism,” says Katz.
Intense criticism and praise can cause sports kids to feel so much pressure they want to quit sports altogether. They may choose instead activities that they perceive as more fun.
Instead of focusing so much on achievement, parents need to encourage kids to focus on the process–passing well, communicating with team mates, or being good defensive players. And parents should always encourage kids to have fun.