• October 15, 2014
  • By Luke Mintzas
  • Comments Off on How to Not Ruin Sports for your Kids
  • in Blog

How to Not Ruin Sports for your Kids

My father is Greek, and like all good Greek kids do, he played soccer.  So, when I was old enough for my first pair on soccer cleats, off I went.  Thanks to my asthma, my soccer career came to a very quick end and I officially retired from the sport at age 5.  Although I'm sure this must have been slightly disappointing for him at the time, looking back, I'm glad soccer didn't work out for me.  I went on to find my love for baseball, and got to keep my Dad, as just Dad.  

As a new father, I look forward to helping my son pick out his first mitt.  We'll oil it up, put a baseball deep into the pocket, wrap a towel around it and put it under the mattress for a couple days.  Then we'll head to the backyard where I'll teach my boy to play catch.  As the ball flies his way, he'll open his glove wide, reach it way out in front of him, elbow completely locked out... as the ball gets close he'll get a little scared and turn his head away.  The ball will plop onto the grass and he'll do his best to get to it before the dog does.  He'll pick it up, do his best wind up and throw the ball no where near me... not even close.  I'll yell, "good throw!", and he'll jump up and down for no reason.
In my playing days, I saw a lot of dads coaching their kids.  In a lot of these cases I also saw the strain put on their relationships.  We've all seen it.  Sports are insanely competitive now.  Every parent thinks their kid is going to the big leagues, or that they're going to get that full ride to the college of their choice.  They lose sight of the more important objectives of youth athletics... being a team player, working hard, exercising, dealing with failure, dealing with success, having fun.
Being a CrossFit coach, I try to keep these same objectives in mind for our athletes.  Our Townies and guests may find it a little odd to hear our pre-WOD pep talk....
Work Hard!
Have Fun!
We Love You!
If you've ever wondered why we've adopted this mantra, check out the article.. a must read for any sports parent.