Parents Can Model Good Sportsmanship In Pee Wee Football

Parents who want their boys to learn teamwork, good sportsmanship, and hard work often enroll them in pee wee football programs.

Being involved with a team brings a sense of camaraderie and helps youngsters to form lasting friendships while having fun. Every fall, parks and fields come alive with the sounds of grunts, helmets crashing, and pads crunching. It's an American tradition. Unfortunately, the obnoxious sounds of parents' bad behavior are often in the air as well. Here are some tips to help you set a good example for your boy.

-- You should never question a coach's decisions in front of your boy. You want your child to learn a healthy respect for authority. To you, the coach may be a peer, but to your son he is definitely an authority figure, just as his teachers at school are, just as you are. If you have real concerns about what a coach may be doing, it is best to talk to him directly and not embarrass him in front of his team. Try to stay positive and supportive as much as possible. It's good for the team and it's good for your blood pressure!

-- Let the coaches do their job: your job is to cheer. It is simply obnoxious when a parent tries to coach his son from the sidelines, giving specific advice and recommendations. What you think is best may be in direct opposition to what the coach wants him to do: your son will be confused, and other parents (not to mention the coaches) will be downright annoyed. Resist the urge to get involved where you clearly don't belong.

-- Temper, temper. Things often get heated at pee wee football games, don't they? Sometimes you'd think the stakes were as high as the outcome of the Superbowl. Referees are often the recipients of some of the most disrespectful, foul, and boorish behavior: and this is coming from the parents and not the kids!

You will not always agree with the decisions the referees make, but in no way does that give you the right to be abusive. It sets a terrible example for your son and most likely embarrasses him in front of his teammates. If you absolutely cannot control your mouth but want to be supportive at games, try to park in a place where you can view the action from the car. You can yell all you want in there without setting a bad example.

The outcomes of individual games are seldom remembered by the boys who are participating, but they will remember the lessons they learn from the good example set by their parents.


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