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The Ultimate Sports Parent

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Instilling Confidence and Success in Sports



This Blog “Youth Sports” offers excellent information and products for coaches and parents. The site also sends out weekly emails.
Lisa Cohn and Patrick Cohn, Ph.D, posted the following article on their blog, July 9, 2015.


Sports parenting as divorced parents poses a number of challenges. However, married couples might see the some of the same issues…

For example, one parent may be excited about kids’ involvement in sports. The other may have no interest.

If the parents can’t work together to ensure their young athletes attend practice, have access to uniforms and equipment, and enjoy sports, kids can suffer—in sports and outside of it.

“A lot of the time, when there’s baggage and anger, divorced parents will use sports as a weapon against their ex-spouses,” says Brian Brunkow, author of “Zero Offseason: Divorce & Sports Parenting.”

He’s a youth sports coach and San Diego based attorney with a background in family law. “One parent might not take kids to practice or won’t show up at games.”

For all divorced parents, it’s critical to keep your kids’ best interests in mind, and avoid using sports to get back at your ex-spouse, he insists.

Some divorced parents try to use their kids’ sports successes to show they’re good parents, he adds.

“What the kids need is a backstop,” he says. “Let the coaches coach and let the players play. Parents need to be the backstop.”

That means they need to put their egos, hurt and frustration aside.

“Get on the same page, so the child feels secure,” advises Brunkow. “The child shouldn’t get caught in the middle if there are inconsistent expectations from parents. The youth should be the focus.”

When divorced parents are putting together a parenting plan, they shouldn’t see sports as an activity that takes time away from parents.

Some divorced parents try to squeeze sports into their schedules, without really figuring out how much time is needed, he says. Instead, they need to build their schedules around sports – and commit to
ensuring their kids can go to practice and play.

For some divorced parents, sports activities offer the opportunity to see their children more often. They can both attend games on days they don’t officially ‘have” their kids with them.

Want some more tips about how to handle sports parenting when you’re divorced?

Exclusive members of Kids’ Sports Psychology have immediate access to our full interview with Brunkow, which includes tips about whether parents should sit together at games, how to handle stepparents who are crazy about sports, and what single idea divorced parents need to keep in mind at all times. Here it is:


Dr. Patrick Cohn, Master Mental Game Coach

The Ultimate Sports Parent by Peak Performance Sports

Instilling Confidence and Success in Sports


Hotline: http://www.youthsportspsychology.com

888-742-7225 | 407-909-1700

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