Learning to take criticism in sports is one of the most important things to prepare you in life. One reason sports are so great for kids is they get put to the test early. Parents are the best teacher to kids in every aspect, but coaches and teachers play a role too. When teaching a large group, you’re bound to come across a few kids who don’t focus. It’s not so bad if they respond well to criticism, but the ones who have a bad attitude or excuses are no fun to coach.
How to receive criticism in sports
No matter how good or old you get, you should always take criticism in sports.
One of the best ways to learn how is by watching professional athletes. 99% of them will take it without sulking or coming up with excuses. It’s one reason they are pros. They know how to act.
Even if your coach is wrong in what they are yelling to you about, don’t correct them. Maybe you can ask for a meeting later on in private, but don’t have a bad attitude, especially in front of others. There is no better way to disrespect your coach.
5 things you must do:
- Look at your coach in the eyes
- Have good body language
- Make sure your facial expressions are respectable
- Acknowledge them with a verbal answer showing you heard them
- Keep working hard, don’t sulk.
What if misbehaving is a habit
If I’m the coach and the player keeps misbehaving they’re going to keep hearing correction and criticism.
Depending on the age, parents might have to be contacted.
Sitting the bench should do it. After that, monitor their behavior to see which direction they go.
Think about all the pros like Antonio Brown who continuously have a bad attitude. They end up losing their job and therefore tons of money from smaller or no contracts.
The talent has to outweigh the antics, and no players is that good where they can keep acting like a baby.
Buck up and have some maturity. Take correction, keep working hard to improve or hit the road.
Receiving criticism in sports is part of it. This is one thing that builds our character and helps us become better adults.
Is there any hope for the riff raff?
Yes! Sometimes it takes years for kids to finally mature and learn how to act and respond, but there is hope! As a player, I know I wasn’t the easiest to coach. The journey though helps me help the new generation.
One of the most difficult kids I ever trained became one of the hardest working mature teenagers. At ages 6-10 he was so hard to work with. It wasn’t so much that he was disrespectful, but that he got so frustrated with himself. When you have bad body language, it’s disrespectful to the coach or teammate. When this particular boy turned about 14 things changed and kept getting better.
There are other stories of young adults who had bad attitudes and had to have a hard nose coach turn their thinking around.
It’s great to see stories told by people who give credit to those who helped them with mindset. Whether it was the coach, parent or teacher. Sometimes it takes just one and other times it takes all.
It takes a village.
Why coaches and teachers can help impact the youth
They say that besides the parents, coaches and teachers spend more time with youth than any other adult.
My college coach helped impact me in many ways. How to take criticism in sports was one.
Some kids don’t see their parents much, so coaches and teachers become the role model needed.
There are thousands of HS, college and pro athletes who say that their coach was like a father or mother to them.
The strict discipline, honest feedback and love given goes a long way.
Kids are some of the smartest people. They know when you are for them.
Does growing up rich or poor matter?
You could be rich and be a punk. Same with being poor. What matters is how you are raised, the people you’re around and the choices you make.
Being grateful is key!
I’ve worked with kids all ages and from all different backgrounds. From Guatemala, Jamaica, Belize, Highland Park, Palo Alto to Southlake, TX… Great kids come from every corner of the world.
Some of the most difficult kids to teach are the one who grow up with money and no teaching at home.
A child must be taught how to behave and treat peers and authority.
Fortunately, I was blessed enough to travel around the world… 20 countries, 4 continents. Whether you grow up in the most affluent area or you grow up in poverty, what makes the difference is how you are raised at a young age.
Above all, kids who learn to take criticism in sports and be grateful usually end up being more responsible adults.
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