It’s many parents dream to see your kids achieve in sport at a very high level and if they are showing potential and are interested in pursuing this then there is so much a parent can do to help their child along and ensure they have the best chance of achieving their dreams. Let’s look at some of the ways parents are trying to help their kids get the break and advantage in their sporting pursuits, apologies and disclaimer for the fact that this article may lean a little towards tennis as that’s the sport my kids played most but I’ll try to make it as general as possible to apply to all.
Get Them In The Correct Club Or The Correct Coach
One thing I found very early on was that the kids found an interest in tennis in particular and at first just knocking a ball around with them round the garden was absolutely fine but as a mild interest started developing into a passion then it was key to find the right coaching for them. If you are looking for them to succeed in the sport it’s important to get this sorted as early as possible and there are quite a few factors involved in finding the right coach you should research this as much as possible, see what the coach to child ratio is, make sure the coaches are appropriately qualified and have the right attitude to the job and what their past record in coaching players that have progressed.
Ensure They Have The Proper Equipment
It’s important that your child has the correct equipment for their chosen sport if they are planning to take it seriously, you should first of all ensure that any gear that you buy for them meets regulation size and weight so that they are not left practising on equipment that then is different to what they will end up using in competition. You also should make sure any protective equipment is of good standard and of a well known and respected brand, safety is not something you should want to be playing around with and taking any chances, on this note you should if at all possible avoid second hand gear, especially if we are talking about safety and protective equipment such as helmets and pads in contact sports.
Invest In Training Equipment At Home
It’s great if you’ve got the correct coaching for your kids and you have managed to get them on to a top team or accepted into a great training programme but then you don’t want to rest on your efforts at this point, you will want to ensure they have adequate space and resources to be able to practise and train at home as well. We found that when the kids were able to do a good percentage of what they could do at training at home as well it really helped them with their progression. We always tried to be on hand to practise with them and be around for tips and pointers but with life and work this was not always possible, we are such a busy and active family and as such there is so much going on. So we decided to invest in a tennis ball machine at home, a great idea but which one was the best to get, it is useful to do your research because as with all other equipment you don’t want a poor quality or cheap and inadequate version so it’s a good idea to check out as many reviews as possible before making your decision and purchase.
Make Sure They Have Some Break Time
As much as I’ve talked about ways in which to help encourage and progress your child in their sporting challenges and competitions it is important as well to not get too obsessed and allow them plenty break time to be able to have other interests, let them rest up and pretty much just be a normal kid. You can spend some quality down-time just chilling out and reading or watching a movie and basically just having some bonding time. As well as the time out for recreation you should be aware of allowing physical recovery time for children to avoid burnout as this will hold back progress and actually have the possibility of putting the child off participating in the sport as being hurt and out of action can be really depressing.
Ensure You Attend As Many Of Their Matches As Possible
Showing your support by way of attending games and matches is essentially important to show that you care and support your children and to be able to be there to share in their joys when things are going well and to support them when things are not going so well and to help them learn to be a good winner and a good loser as well as being gracious in defeat and respectful in victory are just as important life lessons as raw achievement. It’s also a nice social occasion for you and the rest of the family as well as it’s good to get to know the other families involved in the same sport as you all are.
Take Them To See Top Level Professionals In Action
Another way to give encouragement and show them what can be achieved by hard work and lots of practise is to take them to see athletes at the top of their sport, this is a huge treat, a great day out and can be a reward for all of their hard work up until this point. With a bit of good planning you can get the right time and event to take them to. As well as being fun and exciting it’s actually a great way to study technique to see someone at a much higher level in real life will show them how to do it in the proper way.