Helping Parents Coach From Home

  • April 23, 2020

5 coaching tips to help parents keep their athletes motivated at home.

We’re sure that many of you have been receiving questions from parents about what they can be doing at home to help their young athletes continue to stay motivated and working on skill development during this time.

To help, we have put together 5 practical and easy to implement coaching tips below that will help parents keep their kids active and inspired while your season is on a break.

  1. Reinforce positive feedback
    On the playing field we know that an athlete is more likely to reach their potential when they receive more positive than negative feedback. Studies have shown that on average, it takes a minimum ratio of 5 positive comments to 1 negative comment in order for an athlete to consistently continue to develop their skills and achieve performance goals (citation). As your child is practicing and learning new skills, try to keep this 5-to-1 ratio in mind in order to facilitate the best conditions for them to succeed.
  2. Help your children to develop a growth mindset
    Sometimes in sport, it’s easy to get caught up in the outcomes – the wins and loses, final scores and point totals. However, it’s actually the process – including practice, effort, and improvement – that has the most impact on how much your child enjoys their sport and how they develop skills. This includes framing mistakes as an opportunity for growth. Help your athlete see the potential for improvement by asking them to self-assess when something doesn’t go according to plan, and reflect on how they can improve on it for next time. Not only will this encourage persistence, but it will also teach your child how to break down skills and mark milestones as they work towards mastering each one.
  3. Take the opportunity to teach life skills through sports
    Coaches have the unique opportunity to teach skills that their athletes often end up using both on and off the playing field. As you coach your children at home, help them to see when a skill that they are learning may have broader implications beyond the game and may be useful in their day-to-day life. This can help reinforce learning and encourage your athlete to be creative in their thinking by looking for correlations between real world situations and their experiences on the playing field.
  4. Ask them what they need
    Even at practice, or during a game, a Coach knows that their player cannot perform to their potential if their mind is focused (even in part) on something happening elsewhere in their life. The pandemic experience this spring has been an emotional roller-coaster for adults and children alike, and it’s important to acknowledge this. Sports can provide a welcome distraction from the many changes we are experiencing. However, If you feel like your kids are not paying attention or truly “listening” while they are practicing, they may just need a chance to share how they are feeling that day before they can refocus on the task at hand.
  5. Model for your own kids
    The best coaches show their love of the game readily and demonstrate respect for the sport, their opponents and officials. The more you can model positivity and enthusiasm, the more this attitude will become the norm for your child.

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Looking for ways to support your athletes?

Check out our article below with tips and tricks to support your athletes during this time.

Supporting Your Athletes

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