Basics

Youth Sports: Pluses and Minuses For Parents

It is common wisdom that both boys and girls benefit from playing organized sports in a variety of ways, including socially. But do parents also benefit from their involvement? Does the time and money parents spend going to their kids' practices and games benefit them socially? Do they feel it is worth all the effort? According to a study by researchers at Purdue University in the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, the answer seems to be a qualified yes.

 

Are You a Parent or a Chauffeur?

Author of new children's book, Hey Dad, Let's Have A Catch!, advises parents to do more than just drive their kids to practices and games.

Unstructured Free Play Important for Kids

Too often these days, parents feel they have no choice but to pack their child's schedules with adult-supervised, adult-driven activities such as organized sports, even in the summer, when kids have the most free time.  But, as a report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) makes clear, such activities should not come at the expense of free and unstructured play, which is critical to healthy child development.

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After A Loss: Advice for Parents

With the winter sports season in full swing, it is important for parents to remember that, no matter how talented your child may be, there are going to be days when she doesn't play her best or when, despite her best effort, her team loses. How you manage both the ups and the inevitable downs will play a large role in whether your child has a successful youth sports experience.

When Is Your Child Ready To Play Sports?

I am often asked by parents how to decide when a child is ready to play sports? What sports should she play? When is too early? When is too late? What should a parent's expectations be starting out? While there are no pat answers to these questions and no hard-and-fast rules, here is some general advice.

Buying Athletic Shoes For Children

A recent study found that a majority of kids wear shoes that are too small, which put them at risk for developing serious foot deformities, such as bunions.  Here are some tips on buying athletic shoes for your child that fit!

Burnout In Youth Athletes: Risk Factors, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

While geared to sports medicine professionals, a new position statement from the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine provides helpful guidance to sports parents on the causes, risk factors, diagnosis, and treatment of burnout in youth athletes.

Five Snow Day Activities For Parents and Kids

Snow days can provide a surprisingly productive opportunity to build upon your child's social, emotional learning and resilience skills. Here are five ways parents can use snow days to help build their child's resilience.

Twelve Signs of A Good Youth Sports Program

The very best youth sports programs, says Brooke de Lench, share 12 characteristics.

Excessive Adult Praise For Youth Athletes Can Backfire For Those With Low Self-Esteem, Study Suggests

Parents and other adults are inclined to heap the highest praise on children with low self-esteem who are most likely to actually be hurt by the compliments, finds a new study, with important implications for youth sports parents.
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