Adapted from the 10 Commandments for Swim Parents, published on the USA Swim website.
- Thou shalt not impose your ambitions on thy child
Remember that basketball is your child’s activity. In a sport where size does matter, and uneven growth is a reality, don’t judge your child’s performance based off the performances of others.
- Thou shalt be supportive no matter what
Children play to have fun. Don’t ruin it for them.
- Thou shalt not coach thy child
By signing your child up to a team, you have entrusted their development to a coach. Let them focus on your child’s technique and learning. Coaching your child will confuse them and undermine the coach-player bond.
- Thou shalt only have positive things to say at a game
Cheer and applaud, but never criticize the coach.
- Thou shalt acknowledge thy child’s fears
Being nervous and under performing at a game is a difficulty only they can overcome. Don’t make it worse by belittling them.
- Thou shalt not criticize the officials
Basketball is a game played by humans. Everyone makes mistakes. They are not refereeing game 7 of the NBA finals.
- Honor thy child’s coach.
The coach-player bond is a special and important one for player growth and fun. Don’t tarnish it by criticizing the coach in front of your child.
- Thou shalt respect thy child’s teammates
The players around your child are learning the game as well. Don’t impart a bad attitude to your child by blaming them.
- Thy child shall have goals other than winning.
Playing your hardest and never giving up is more important than winning. These attitudes go a lot further than one basketball game.
- Thou shalt not expect your child to play in the NBA (or even college!)
1 in 35 (3.6%) of high school players end up on a college team. The chance of making an NBA team is even smaller at 3 in 10,000. Reaching the highest levels of play is an opportunity few get, but it doesn’t stop people from competing and having fun. Basketball can teach discipline, build character, instill a healthy lifestyle, help your child make lifelong friends. Everyone, no matter their skill level, can gain these benefits by playing. Let’s keep the game fun!
If you’re a basketball parent, I think it’s worth keeping the “10 Commandments for Basketball Parents” in mind as you follow your child on the life journey that is basketball. Coaches, be sure to share these mantras with your team! Was there anything that you didn’t agree with? Don’t be afraid to go to our facebook or twitter pages to voice your opinion!
Until next time, see you on the courts!
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