Multiple kids, multiple sports
If you have a family with multiple kids participating in multiple sports, you know what a daunting task it is to divide your time equally among your kids' games.
With most youth sporting events taking place in the evenings or on weekends, it's inevitable there will be time conflicts, leaving many parents frustrated and feeling guilty. Kids always appreciate seeing their parents at their games and likewise, parents love seeing their kids out there having fun and making great plays. So it's easy to see why juggling multiple sports schedules can cause so much distress.
Here are a few ideas to consider when you're trying to divide time equally between sporting events:
- As soon as you get your kids' sports schedules, put all the games and practices on a calendar.
- As you go through the sports schedules, try to get your kids involved in the process, too. While they may not completely understand why you feel the pressure of trying to balance multiple sports schedules, they will see the effort you're putting into trying to balance your time. Have a conversation about the importance of being fair to each child and explain that you are trying to attend as many games as possible. Your kids will appreciate the conversation and it will help them understand when you are unable to make a game.
- Try alternating games with your spouse (one parent goes to one game, the other goes to a different game). Vary your routine throughout the season - some nights both parents attend the same game; other times parents attend separate games.
- Take pictures or video at a game. It's a great way to capture those special moments and later enjoy them as a family. You can even create a video or photo slide show so kids can enjoy the action from their sibling's games (and even their own).
- Try to attend the most significant games. If one of your children has a big game, you may want to schedule those first, then work in the less significant games.
- Balancing sports schedules can provide many teachable moments for kids. Life skills such as multi-tasking, communicating effectively, time-management, and conflict resolution are all great skills your kids can learn from the scheduling process.
Read Dr. Stankovich's new book, Sports Success 360! The book gives coaches, parents and student athletes life strategies for performance and character development.
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- The do's and don'ts of summer sports (July 2009)
- Failed school levies and athletics (June 2009)
- What is sport sampling? (May 2009)
- How to talk sports with kids (April 2009)
- Your child's team is not a babysitter (March 2009)
- Dealing with pressure (February 2009)
- Does your child have sports burnout? (January 2009)
- Help your child overcome 'choking' (December 2008)
- Help your child see challenges instead of fear (November 2008)
- You've got questions the Sports Doc has answers (October 2008)
- Interview with former gymnast Dayna Goen (September 2008)
- The psychology of injury recovery (August 08)
- Getting into the zone (July 08)
- Embracing the process of youth sports (June 08)
- Help your child handle cuts (May 08)
- Student athletes can positively affect non-athletes (April 08)
- Developing a personal portfolio (March 08)
- Athletes and risk-taking behaviors (February 08)
- Parents' unfulfilled dreams sometimes forced on child (January 08)
- 2007 Sports Doc archive
Dr. Chris Stankovich offers individual athletic counseling and team/league seminars. Read Dr. Stankovich's new book, Sports Success 360. The book gives coaches, parents and student athletes life strategies for performance and character development. Visit drstankovich.com for more details.