parentsHow many times have we seen an athlete stop while in the middle of a game because one or both of their parents have summoned them? First off, once the game begins, the parent’s role is to become a cheerleader. Supporting the athletes and recognizing good efforts is more important than trying to give feedback or instructions in the middle of play.  Second, anything that takes the athlete’s mind away from the game is deemed a distraction. I imagine that most parents don’t like distractions at work or while driving, since both require your undivided attention. Well, your athlete’s sport also requires their undivided attention to be successful. Most adults have forgotten the reality that it takes mistakes and failures for us to learn and improve. By interfering in the process, you’re slowing down many learning opportunities that will benefit them as adults, especially in the workplace. Lastly, we as spectators don’t know what kind of instructions have been provided by the coach and thus our secondary instructions (albeit correct in some instances) can cause internal conflict within the mind of the athlete. Do I listen to my parent or do I listen to my coach? The athlete’s job is to listen to the coach during the game, play their best at all times, and then receive support and guidance from their parents after the game.  Parents need to allow coaches to coach and players to play.  Game day interference only interrupts a player’s focus and success.parents 7