All through your life you will have to make decisions about when to treat yourself and when to discipline yourself. It’s important to have a balance.
Kids will be kids. They’ll want to eat a lot of sugar. They’ll stay up late playing video games at sleepovers. They’ll struggle with prioritizing and time management.
As responsible coaches and responsible sports parents, we can use sports to help young athletes grow through those childlike behaviors and help them perform better on and off the field.
The strategy we suggest here is based on:
Players loving their sport and looking forward to practices and games
Players wanting to perform well and contribute to team success
Coaches and parents reinforcing each other's messages
Let’s start with a typical scenario of a post-practice meeting the day before a game. A responsible coach will remind players to get enough sleep, to eat a balanced meal two or three hours before the game and to stay hydrated.