Recruiting for Parents

3 Things Parents of Athletes Should Know

man holding his children and talking about things parents of athletes should know
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Nobody wants your child to succeed in the athletic process more than you do. Years of sacrifice and preparation. Untold moments of character building. Hours upon hours of academic help. You’ve worked hard to prepare your student-athlete for this moment.

Don’t let all that hard work go to waste: Even the most well-intentioned parent can make one of several common mistakes. After all, it’s hard to find the line of being protective and over protective.

We love articles about what parents should keep in mind about recruiting, and hope you’ll take them to heart.

3 Things Parents of Athletes Should Know

Whether it’s about sportsmanlike conduct, having a winner’s mindset, or knowing who the coach is, your child learns it all from you.

It’s not about you; it’s about them. Tweet this! Tweet:

When your child is on the field (or in the rink, or on the track…) it’s their time to shine. Make sure they know you’re there to support them, but that’s, really, where it should end. Don’t yell at coaches after the game, and please — please — don’t yell at your child. If you’re unhappy about the way your child played or the amount of time they got on the court, there are ways you can work to address that without letting your emotions boil over.

This goes quadruple for yelling at referees.

Helicopters are for meant for the sky — not for parenting. Tweet this! Tweet:

Remember that your sons and daughters aren’t professional athletes, and that youth athletics are supposed to instill a love of the game, and basic skills. If they aren’t making mistakes, they aren’t learning. Likewise, if they’re not trying their hand (or foot, or stick) at multiple sports, how will you know what they’re best at? More importantly: what they most love?

No, but seriously. Don’t try to force your student-athlete to specialize in one sport at least until they’re in middle school, and maybe even later than that.Tweet this! Tweet:

It’s your child’s game to win — and their game to lose. Whether they forget a piece of equipment at home or forget a specific play, it’s through failure that champions are born. We sincerely believe that. Don’t push your child to be perfect, or you risk alienating them from the game that you–and hopefully they–love so much. Plus ulcer medication is expensive.

But most importantly, know that your sons and daughters–even if they say you’re embarrassing them–are really proud to have you as their parents, and grateful for your support.


Do you have more specific questions about how you can help your child in the recruiting process? Our national scouts are here to help you figure out what college programs you might qualify for by creating your free NCSA Athletic Recruiting profile.

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About the author
Andy McKernan

Andy McKernan is the content strategist at NCSA Athletic Recruiting. A content marketer with a background in creative writing, Andy brings several years of experience to NCSA.