Guidelines for Honoring the Game
The key to preventing adult misbehavior in youth sports is a youth
sports culture in which all involved "Honor the Game." Honoring the Game
gets to the ROOTS of the matter and involves respect for the Rules,
Opponents, Officials, Teammates and one's Self. You don't bend the rules
to win. You understand that a worthy opponent is a gift that forces you
to play to your highest potential. You show respect for officials even
when you disagree. You refuse to do anything that embarrasses your team.
You live up to your own standards even if others don't. Here are ways
that parents can create a positive youth sports culture so that children
will have fun and learn positive character traits to last a lifetime.
Before the Game:
Make a commitment
to Honor the Game in action and language no matter what others may
Tell your child
before each game that you are proud of him or her regardless of how
well he or she plays.
During the Game:
children's "Emotional Tank" through praise and positive recognition
so they can play their very best.
instructions to your child during the game. Let the coach correct
Cheer good plays by
both teams (this is advanced behavior!)
Mention good calls
by the official to other parents.
If an official
makes a "bad" call against your team? Honor the Game—BE SILENT!
If another parent
on your team yells at an official? Gently remind him or her to Honor
Don't do anything
in the heat of the moment that you will regret after the game. Ask
yourself, "Will this embarrass my child or the team?"
Remember to have
fun! Enjoy the game.
After the Game:
Thank the officials
for doing a difficult job for little or no pay.
Thank the coaches
for their commitment and effort.
Don't give advice.
Instead ask your child what he or she thought about the game and
then LISTEN. Listening fills Emotional Tanks.
Tell your child
again that you are proud of him or her, whether the team won or
From Positive Coaching Alliance
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