Getting grandparents involved in youth sports

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Be a role model – Positive Attitudes

Get involved: Grandparents can be role models imparting the idea that all athletes win some and lose some. We can’t control the message about competition our grandkids get from TV or from their friends, but we can reinforce the message of the importance of having a positive attitude. When grandparents role model the perspective that they are proud of their grandchildren whether they won the game or not, whether they hit the ball or not, they are reinforcing how important it is to have a positive attitude throughout life.

Encouragement

Get Involved: When kids get mixed messages that success equals winning and failure means losing, this subtlety can lead kids to try so hard in competitions that they go beyond the rules because the stakes are too high.

Grandparents can offer a very important counterbalance through words of wisdom and support. Subtle things like a thumbs-up sign and positive behavior on the sidelines when an official makes a controversial call all help a child understand that success isn’t just about winning and that no matter what, rules are rules.

Teamwork

Get Involved: Besides sports, board games can inspire teamwork. Team up with your grandchildren and host a family board game night.  Whether you’re playing classic favorites like Monopoly or a card game like UNO, encourage kids and adults to work together as the family spends a fun evening refining good sportsmanship traits.

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