Parents play a vital role in Burr and Burton's athletic program. Parents should leave the officiating to the officials, the coaching to the coaches, the playing to the players, and focus on the life lessons young people take away from sports. Nobody else can do this job the way that parents can.
Parents should help athletes prepare for competition with proper rest, nutrition, hydration, and emotional support. Burr and Burton's training rules are an important first step in helping athletes achieve their potential, but parents can go much further in providing a winning lifestyle. Talk to your child’s coach for more information about proper preparation for competition.
Throughout the season, but especially after games, talk to your son or daughter to make sure they are taking away the appropriate life lessons from their experience. Winning and losing athletic contests are not inherently positive or negative experiences -- use them as opportunities to build your teenager into the kind of adult you want them to be.
Adversity in athletics provides students the perfect opportunity to learn a number of important lessons. If you clear the path, some of those lessons are lost. Give them the support they need to develop appropriate strategies so that they will be better equipped to handle real adversity in life.
An athletic contest is a classroom where young people are being tested in a very public way. Respect the situation and model positive sportsmanship.
During games, cheer loudly for your athlete and their teammates. There will be difficult moments during the competition and your presence on the sideline and your vocal support will give your athlete a boost to perform at their best. Allow them freedom to do their job without micromanaging their work. It is confusing for an athlete to receive instruction from multiple sources during a contest. Give them the chance to execute the game plan they have worked on in practice without interference.
Allow the officials to do their job without comments from you. This is their place of business. Spectators have no place interacting with officials other than to thank them for their time. Throughout the state, in all sports, there are far too few people willing to become officials. Appreciate the ones we have and if you are truly knowledgeable about the rules of the game, please consider joining the profession.
After a game, tell your athlete how much you love watching them play. Let the athlete steer any conversation about the experience by asking open-ended questions. If you have advice to share, ask them if they are ready for it and respect their answer. Sometimes they just want to share their thoughts and feelings.
As parents of teenagers, you already know how quickly time flies. Enjoy the remainder of your son or daughter’s athletic career. Use it to grow closer and to teach life lessons.