It is a great day when you as a soccer parent can get out to a soccer field, in the fresh air or a stadium full of spectators and watch a great game of soccer.
It is even better when you can cheer on your children and their friends. It is also inspiring to see both teams as they play for the fun and the competition. It is fantastic to see them playing from the heart, with smiles on their faces and sweat on their bodies. The children are engaged in an activity that promotes teamwork, individual skill, athleticism, talent, problem solving and the ability to overcome difficult situations on the field.
If we as soccer parents can keep this in mind we will help our children develop into well round individuals capable of handling life's situations and expectations.
Sport is great for the soccer parent and the entire family and football is one of the greatest sports.
Sometimes our need to win overshadows our children's need to play fairly and have fun.
The word "sportsmanship" still applies to the game of soccer. Its values should be preserved and held to be true.
We all want the best for our progeny, but sometimes we lose sight of what that is. As a soccer parent, we sometimes get caught up in the possibilities of hype and glory.
Remember, when the youth soccer player stops having fun it is time to examine the reasons why this is happening. Although there generally are a lot of factors, try and start looking at yourself. Are you as a soccer parent living vicariously through your child and are missing your own need for competition and play?
Try to be realistic about your child and their abilities. We all want our children to be the best, or sometimes even better than others. We sometimes lose sight of the development process of learning and growing.
Your child might have two left feet this year, but next year be really engaged in their sport. The opposite might be true, especially in the puberty years when the children seem to be all legs and no co-ordination.
The child needs encouragement at every step of the way. This is positive re-enforcement for participating in life long activity, which means keeping fit, mentally, physically and spiritually.
Be involved and evolved.
Let the the children run and have FUN.
Be the best soccer parent you can be