Mental Toughness Challenge #12: Kids, Parents and Criticism

We’ve all heard them… the parents who pull their children aside and tell the children not to follow a coach’s instruction.  Have you heard of the parents who criticize a child’s performance?  Not only are these parents actually hindering their child’s potential, but they are chipping away at a child’s enthusiasm about sports.

Children participate in sports for many reasons: friends may be involved, they may have a genuine interest, it may be a family’s passion, or it can be as simple as a child wanting to try something new.  Regardless of the many reasons why children participate in sports, they all STAY in sports because they are passionate about and genuinely enjoy the sport.

As a parent of an aspiring athlete it is important that you motivate your child to participate in sports for the right reasons.  I challenge you to think about how you respond to your son or daughter’s performance in sports.

Ask yourself:  Do I criticize my child or do I encourage them in positive ways?  How do I influence, either intentionally or unintentionally, my child’s attitude, beliefs or mindsets about his/her sport?  Is my involvement in my child’s sport helpful or harmful?

By establishing the ground rules to good communication which supports your child’s mental toughness you’ll not only learn a great deal about what drives your child to succeed, but you’ll help develop a top performer.


Want to know more about parenting a student athlete?

Contact me by filling in the “contact us” form at I will then arrange time to talk with you on the phone and help you better understand the various methods and options you have to support your child in his or her sport.

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