Youth sports parents play many different roles: former (or current) athlete, coach, fan, motivator, role model, critic, and maybe most importantly, influencer.
Studies have shown that family members may influence an athlete’s involvement and achievement in sport even more than coaches. Parents also are the first and most critical determiners in whether or not children reap the social benefits of playing sports.
This is why it is so crucial that sports parents are aware and accountable for their actions, and how those influence their young athletes.
Parental encouragement is significantly related to a child’s attraction to and competence in playing sports. Parents who provide positive encouragement instill a greater sense of enjoyment, ability, and motivation in their child.