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Old 04-03-2011, 08:17 AM
 
20,793 posts, read 52,484,126 times
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When we were growing up sports took place during the day in the summer or right after school during the school year. They were coached by paid coaches, NOT PARENTS. Parents NEVER attended practices and usually only went to home games. It was SO much better because it was all about the kids, not the parents and how they were "better" parents because their child was an athlete.

Now, having been a coach for going on 30 years, I would LOVE to see this system return but it never will. Our kids are involved in sports and we love to watch them play/compete as much as the next person. We have never let it consume our life however. Kids were limited to how many activities they could be in. THEY did not want to be in something all the time either. They have friends that play in a school sport, a couple club teams, all at the same time. They have NO time to get homework done and their parents wonder why their grades are so bad.

As soon as athletes started making millions, parents saw this as the new "retirement" plan and started pushing their kids.
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Old 04-03-2011, 08:24 AM
 
157 posts, read 109,750 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rkb0305 View Post
well, no one volunteered to be the assistant coach, so DH was on his own. Thankfully there were a couple dads who helped a lot. I just wouldn't go encouraging parents to drop their young kids off at practice. In my experience, those parents are a problem. When they get older, it's different, I'm sure.
The best solution to this is to call the local police department 5 minutes after practice is over if there are any kids left with you. Police will quickly tire of taking on the abandoned kids and parents will be forced to pick them up on time.

Either that, or simply tell parents at the beginning of the season, if any child is left at the field or gym 5 minutes after practice is over, they will be left without supervision since your job ends when practice ends. All it would take is once and you'll have every parent there in time.

The softer a coach is with kids left after practice, the more he or she is taken advantage of.

To the OP, You're the adult. Put your foot down and limit the sports your kids do. They can always play pickup games with neighborhood kids while you're getting things done at home.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by standupandbecounted View Post
The best solution to this is to call the local police department 5 minutes after practice is over if there are any kids left with you. Police will quickly tire of taking on the abandoned kids and parents will be forced to pick them up on time.[
My dad coached a lot of Little League in the 60's. Unpaid (people got paid? wow!) volunteer. Since girls weren't allowed to play the game back then I sat and watched.

He drove the "forgotten" kids home. He also picked them up. There were a heck of a lot of parents who never went to a game let alone a practice. But my dad, and the men like him, made sure that every kid who wanted to play got to play. I lost track of how many miles he put on the station wagon (I was stuffed in the back) going to the houses of kids whose parents couldn't be bothered.

So here's to all the Dads (and Moms) who drive and mentor and teach and listen. And pay for the gas and the soda after the game (win or loose) out of their own pockets. Oh, and equipment. He bought a lot of cups for the boys whose parents were clueless. (I was on those trips too. Big 5 Sporting Goods. I was told to "go look at the tennis rackets", lol.)

Edit to add: When my sons were in youth sports a lot of kids were driven to practice and games by nannies and au pairs. I consider that a whole other story. Oy vay.

Last edited by DewDropInn; 04-03-2011 at 01:47 PM..
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:02 PM
 
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I see a huge difference in youth sports today vs. when we were kids. My experience was very much like DewDrop's, even down to having my Dad coach LL for years. I road my bike across town with a mitt and bat in my hand for softball practice. I'm not sure my parents ever attended a game unless it was their turn to drive.

When my kids played, I was at every game, but that's where I wanted to be. I loved LL, basketball, football, etc. But, many times I would show up at the end of practice, usually with a couple of younger siblings in the car, only to have a coach keep the kids on the field for another 30 minutes. That drove me nuts, so I can understand in some cases parents, not rushing to get the to fields.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:56 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
85,047 posts, read 98,999,163 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by standupandbecounted View Post
The best solution to this is to call the local police department 5 minutes after practice is over if there are any kids left with you. Police will quickly tire of taking on the abandoned kids and parents will be forced to pick them up on time.

Either that, or simply tell parents at the beginning of the season, if any child is left at the field or gym 5 minutes after practice is over, they will be left without supervision since your job ends when practice ends. All it would take is once and you'll have every parent there in time.

The softer a coach is with kids left after practice, the more he or she is taken advantage of.

To the OP, You're the adult. Put your foot down and limit the sports your kids do. They can always play pickup games with neighborhood kids while you're getting things done at home.
While I find your solution extreme, I think some firmness is necessary. If a parent arrives late with a lame excuse, don't say "that's OK". Say, "I really have to get home to my own family". And, end the practices on time.
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Old 04-03-2011, 04:38 PM
 
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I think the issue is that today's kids are driven everywhere. No one really lets their kid ride his bike for the mile or two to the field of play so every time there is an event, the adults have to put everything on hold (chores, etc.) and drive their kids to practice or games.

There also seems to be this belief that parent(s) should be at every single game. My parents would come to one game a season when I was playing sports. It wasn't that they were not interested, it was because they had things they had to do, like work, laundry and help siblings with homework. The household didn't go into an upheaval because one of us had a game and therefore everyone's schedules had to be adjusted to accommodate for that one event. I played sports because I loved to play and would have played if the spectator box was empty.

My brother in law's sister had a daughter that was playing volleyball and her mom tried to go to a few games but could not miss work. Her daughter was unhappy that she wasn't there and said "If you don't come and watch, why should I even play?" Her mother replied, "If the only reason you want to play volleyball is to be watched and not because you love to play volleyball, then don't join the team next year."

I don't remember parents at practices either. Maybe one or two. All of our coaches and managers were parent volunteers, not paid people.
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Old 04-03-2011, 05:32 PM
 
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Actually, in response to a couple of poster's questions, we only allow one sport per child per season. That's it.

But it doesn't matter. Let's take lacrosse for example. My son's 5th and 6th grade team had eleven games and three practices in the past TWO WEEKS. Mind you one of those weekends was a tournament with four games in a weekend, but even the most sports-happy lunatic would have to admit that's way out of hand.

But if you talk to people whose kids are in little league baseball, and the kids are at the ballpark six days a week. You read right there, peeps. Six.

When I played little league baseball, it was one practice and two games a week. That was it. I personally think something has gotten seriously out of whack. No wonder test scores continue to plummet in schools. Because the kids are up playing soccer, baseball, lacrosse, football and hockey every night until 9:30.
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Old 04-03-2011, 05:34 PM
 
11,616 posts, read 19,760,598 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DewDropInn View Post
Edit to add: When my sons were in youth sports a lot of kids were driven to practice and games by nannies and au pairs. I consider that a whole other story. Oy vay.
What's wrong with nannies and au pairs driving kids to practice?
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Old 04-03-2011, 07:02 PM
 
Location: Denver 'burbs
21,163 posts, read 22,168,168 times
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Another perspective....

I generally stayed at practice and watched when my son played sports (one sport per season). I learned a lot about the sport and was able to follow the game and better appreciate my son's progress in the sport over the years. Also met a number of other parents. Some of whom became very good friends with whom we still socialize today - even though our sons go to different high schools or don't run with the same crowd. None of the coaches were paid when my son played and parents were often utilized as helpers - be it timing runs, putting color coded tape on football helmets...there was often something that could be done (some sports more than others though - football - lots and lots of stuff; basketball - hardly anything). I don't regret any of the hours I spent watching practice.

Last edited by maciesmom; 04-03-2011 at 08:03 PM.. Reason: grammar
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Old 04-03-2011, 08:00 PM
 
32,538 posts, read 29,404,928 times
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Originally Posted by Momma_bear View Post
What's wrong with nannies and au pairs driving kids to practice?
Absolutely nothing if the parents are still involved. I should have expanded my post to say my kids had friends whose parents didn't even know what positions they played. Parents who never saw a game. Never said, "Good catch, Son."

I had them at my house looking at my DH and me for the big "thumbs up" their own Mom and Dad should have been giving them. (Which broke my heart sometimes to tell you the truth. A kid finally drives in the run to win the game and Mom and Dad were off doing their own thing and didn't see his moment in the sun. I found that very, very sad.)

Now that I think about it I saw the same thing when I was a kid with my brothers' friends. Parents who never came to the practices nor the games. So it's nothing new.
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