You have been living a sheltered life if you have not heard the cliche “Sports build character”. Throughout my childhood and even into my young adult life, I took this to be fact. I played sports. My character morphed and solidified the more I played. The seemed like a direct correlation. Well, as my colleagues remind me, correlation isn’t causation.
It is probably not a stretch to venture that most people who believe that sports build character are similar to me and have had positive experiences with sports in which they can draw life lessons from. On the flip side, those who disagree with the statement that participation in athletics is a ‘personality enhancer’ likely did not have a positive experience and may even see sports as being detrimental to one’s character development.
The coaching that a parent provides to a youth as they are introduced to sports fosters the child’s mindset
I have had quite a bit of experience with multiple levels sports, varying from a star player to a bench warmer, a college coach to a spectator and now a parent. The one common thread that I have put my finger on is coaching, but not just from the assigned coach. Character construction starts way before the positional coach gets them in a huddle.
The coaching that a parent provides to a youth as they are introduced to sports fosters the child’s mindset, positively or negatively, about how to approach competition, deal with defeat and learn from all of his/her experiences. By the time youth hit their teenage years, much of their mindset and values have been solidified. It is extremely hard for coaching or any chance encounter in sports to change this, especially if the parents are still present and reinforcing, intentionally or not, negative mindsets. Media can also be a less than optimal influence.
Because the initial parental coaching our youth receive is vital to their development and eventual approach to aspects of life such as competition, fitness, failure and cooperation, Man Up Nation will be launching parent/child camps soon to teach and empower parents and youth to make sports a positive character building experience. The details of these camps will be released soon. Please click below if you would like to be notified when the camp dates and locations are released.
Coach CampbellClick here to learn about our camps