- I pledge to be on time or early when dropping off my child for a practice or game. I understand that it is embarrassing for my child to be late to a game or practice and that I am putting him/her at physical risk by not providing adequate time for warm up. I understand the importance of picking up my child on time for all games and practices. This shows respect for the coach, who has other time commitments, and it tells my child that he or she is my top priority.
- I understand that the top three reasons kids play sports are to have fun, make new friends and learn new skills. I understand that the game is for the kids, and that I will encourage my child to have fun and keep sport in its proper perspective. I understand that athletes do their best when they are emotionally healthy, so I will be positive and supportive.
- I will redefine what it is to be a "Winner" in my conversations with my child. A Winner is someone who makes maximum effort, continues to learn and improve, and does not let mistakes, or fear of making mistakes, stop them. I understand that mistakes are an inevitable part of any game and that people learn from their mistakes. I understand that all children are born with different abilities and that the true measure is not how my child compares to others but how he/she is doing in comparison to his/her best self.
- I will "Honor the Game." I understand the importance of setting a good example of sportsmanship to my child. No matter what others may do, I will show respect for all involved in the game including coaches, players, opponents, opposing fans, and referees. I understand that officials, coaches, and players make mistakes. If the referee makes a "questionable" call, I will continue to respect the individual and be silent!
- I understand that games can be exciting times for my child who is trying to deal with the fast-paced action of the game, respond to opponents, referees, teammates and listen to coaches. I will not add confusion by yelling out instructions. During the game, I will limit my comments to encouraging my child and other players for both teams.
- I will not make negative comments about the game, coaches, referees or teammates in my child's presence. I understand that this plants a seed, which can negatively influence my child's motivation and overall experience.
I agree to honor the AYSO Parent Pledge in my words and actions.
Parent Signature____________________________ Print Child's Name__________________________
The following ideas may be helpful for being an AYSO supportive parent.
Conversations before the games · Tell your child you love him/her regardless of the outcome. · Tell him or her "Go for it, give it your best shot and have fun!"
During the game · Understand that kids are over-stimulated during games. The coach is yelling instructions, opponents and teammates are talking, the crowd is cheering, and the referee is blowing the whistle. To a youth sports participant the atmosphere is much like that of a fighter pilot with enemy jets racing all around. Do not yell instructions to your child during the game, since it only adds to the confusion. Sometimes the best thing you can do as a parent is to be quiet. · Cheer and acknowledge good plays by both teams.
After the game · Thank the officials for doing a difficult job. · Thank the coaches for their efforts. Understand that after a difficult loss is not a good time to question a coach. · Thank your opponents for a good game. · Congratulate your child and his or her teammates for their effort. · Compliment individual players on good plays they made in the game.
During the car ride home · Point out a good play your child made during the game. · Avoid criticizing or correcting mistakes. · Ask open-ended questions about how the game was played rather than how many points were scored. Examples of open-ended questions that might apply: "Did you have fun?" "Did you give it your best effort?" "What did you learn from the game?" "What was the best play you made and how did it feel?" " Did you bounce back from your mistakes?"
© 2001 American Youth Soccer Organization