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Common Pitfalls When Coaching Your Own Child

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Jim Thompson (@JimThompson18) is the Founder of Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA), a non-profit organization founded at Stanford University with the mission of helping to transform the culture of youth sports to give all young athletes the opportunity for a positive, character-building experience.

In this video, Thompson explains common mistakes of parents who coach their kids. The first trap that parents fall into is making their child the de facto assistant coach, putting them above the rest of the players. When a parent/coach does this, it undercuts the relationships between their child and his or her teammates, potentially denying the sense of camaraderie that is a major benefit of playing sports.

Further, parents who coach their own kids find it difficult not to show favoritism toward their children or be overly critical of them. While Thompson does not expect parents to be objective about their kids, it is important to seek an objective opinion from other coaches or parents to ensure you are not playing favorites or being overly critical. Generally, people who are not both a parent and a coach at the same time may have a more objective perspective on how you coach your kid, so it may be important to seek these opinions.