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Old 11-11-2012, 12:33 PM   #173
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,112

Originally Posted by Staidhup View Post
Rule number one, a parent should never coach their own child. Yes they can help feed balls, work on mental toughness, only if they themselves participated in high level sports and truly understand what goes through the mind of an athlete. A parent is a child's last and only private sanctuary where they can unload, enjoy that role, as a coach you lose that special role. Let the coach do what you pay them to do, the one that pushes the child, makes corrections, demonstrates what they need to do. At 10 years old to jam tennis down their throat is a terrible mistake, read Andre's book, let them discover and experience all sports. Let them decide what sport suits them best. This garbage about if they don't focus on one sport by 10 or 12 is total nonsense. The key is if they have the determination, discipline, hart, work ethic, and athletic ability, to succeed in a solitary sport. You won't be able to drag them off the court, stop them from training, it's their play ground, in the blood, where they find peace. Yes there are those that are what we call lifers, most burn out early, never live up to the hype, become easily distracted because they don't have that spark and true love for a sport. Support the child in their pursuits, but let them decide what sport to pursue. I see too many parents that have dreams and illusions that are unrealistic for their child to obtain and I see it surface, manifest itself, in the lack of enthusiasm for the sport they have been forced into.
There is certainly some truth to what you wrote, but it does not fit in all situations. I played junior tennis growing up. If I let the coaching all to the coach it would not be enough. Not only that but one lesson a week for each of our kids is about all we can afford. Maybe if we could do more then my input would not be needed. I let the coach do the work and lead us in a direction. He then says this week when you hit with your son work on what we worked on today. I am also the ball feeder, the driver, the shoulder to cry on, and the friend. I realize that my kids can lose matches when they play their best and win matches when they play poorly.
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