Blind Spots

Without parents supporting their kids, there would be no softball. We all have to agree to that fundamental truth. Parents are often the target of the blogs I write. Why? Because they sometimes act in ways that deserve to be called out.

Yes, there are a lot of great parents who are supportive of their kids, team and coaches just like there are the occasional problem parent.

Here are some observations that I hope will lead us on a path where I never have to write another “crazy parent” blog.

  1. If you are in a “winning is important” environment, the coaches are selecting the team they feel gives them the best chance to win.
  2. The coach is not trying to hurt your daughter when they make decisions. It isn’t personal.
  3. Let the coaches coach the team. Your coaching from the sidelines isn’t helping.
  4. Help your player become more independent. You shouldn’t need to deliver water, snacks or anything else during the game.
  5. If you talk negatively about your daughter’s coaches or teammates around her, you’re creating a very difficult situation for her and her her team.
  6. Remember a team has players of different skill levels. Your kid might be the best, or she might not, but they all play an important role.
  7. Many factors contribute to a coach’s decision. Attitude, effort, hustle and dedication are all factors that figure into decision making. If you are not at practice, you might not see the same things the coach does.
  8. Players need a break sometimes. Don’t panic if your kid sits once in a while. They really don’t need to play every inning.
  9. If your daughter wants to play more, then suggest that they work harder at practice, do more on their own, demonstrate a team first attitude or ask their coach what they could do to increase their role.
  10. Remind your daughter that she doesn’t need to look to you every pitch or every swing for feedback or support.
  11. Encourage your daughter to become a student of the game. The more she knows, the less she has to try to think it through during the game.
  12. If you don’t have something nice to say… the more you complain the more she will.
  13. Let your daughter fail. There is a lot to be learned in failure. If you protect her from failure, she’ll never learn all that she can.
  14. Never beat your kid up for a poor performance. They already know they played poorly. They aren’t getting better by you reliving every mistake on the ride home.

Please try to remember these keys points and every team will be a happier team and every player will be a happier team. Nothing takes the fun out of the game faster than an unhappy parent or group of parents. Keep supporting your kid by supporting her team — and coaches.