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Faith & Learning Blog


Teach Your Athletes Good Sportsmanship

September 28, 2015
By U.S. Youth Soccer

There’s nothing like the elated feeling your children get after winning a game they’ve practiced for day and night. But that good feeling can quickly dissipate when faced with bad sportsmanship.

Youth sports are a great opportunity for kids to build self-esteem and learn the essentials of playing a game. But it’s also an opportunity for parents and coaches to teach the importance of good sportsmanship. While parents cheer for their kids on the sidelines, it’s also imperative for them to be positive role models and strong examples of what it means to be a good sport.

Our kids look to their role models, and when adults and athletes have a win-at-all-cost mentality, it can ruin the game and bring out the worst in everyone.

The following are helpful tips and tactics for promoting good sportsmanship.

  • Play with integrity
  • Respect the officials
  • Be a good sport
  • Maintain self-control
  • Let the coaches coach

To bring about the above behaviors, and many others that constitute good sportsmanship we encourages players and parent and coaches to “Honor the Game.” 

And to remember components of this code, we use the acronym ROOTS, which stands for Rules, Opponents, Officials, Teammates and Self.

Following these tips, along with reminding your children you’re proud of them no matter what, will help instill the values of sportsmanship and collectively ensure that our kids have the best sports experience possible.

Read the full post HERE.



April Cook says:
June 17, 2016 10:56 AM CST
Great article! I really like your suggestion to respect the officials. Sometimes it can be easy to get carried away when we think the referee has made a bad call, but athletes and parents need to respect their calls. Student athletes need to be a good example on and off the field. Thanks for this information!