Parents Who Get It and Those Who Don’t
I will admit to being quite surprised by the reaction to last Friday’s segment which was titled “High School Coaching: Yesterday & Today.”
Clearly many who reached out to me were coaches and some shared stories about being driven out of what they loved to do by over the top parents. Of course there are many parents who do “get it” and respect and honor their children’s coaches and realize they are doing the best they can.
Let’s remember that high school sports programs, at least for the most part, are more than just wins and losses. Yes everyone should strive for and seek championships but just as important is being the best you can be and for some athletes and teams the best might be just average. That too has its place as much as winning titles and even earning college scholarships.
I truly believe that most parents simply want the best for their sons and daughters and there is nothing wrong with that. Where the problem usually lies is that parents are poor judges of talent when it comes to their own children.
I know many former standout athletes and even more former coaches who when it came to their own children had an inflated opinion of their abilities. I say this from nearly 40 years of being on the receiving end of their diatribes. The reason is simple. They are not thinking with their head but rather their heart, which by the way we all do at times.
I’m past the time when my children played sports in school and I’ll be the first to admit that I second-guessed their coaches on more than one occasion. However I always did it to myself or maybe my wife but never to their coach. Even more important not to them.
I was honest in knowing that neither of my children were going to play sports past high school and in the end all I really wanted was for them to have the best experience possible. This applies to 93 per cent of those playing high school sports today as only 7% will play a varsity sport in college and less than 2 per cent will do so on the Division 1 level and/or earn a scholarship.
There are some dramatic differences in high school programs and I don’t need to point them out to you. Some compete and win championships on an almost annual basis while some are happy to finish .500. There are great coaches who always seem to win and those men and women who might be a notch below but love to coach and love to work with kids.
At the end of the day that’s not a bad person to have in your corner. More importantly it’s good for your children.