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Teaching Fairness in Sports

Teaching Fairness in SportsSports are an important part of growing up. Hopefully your family has a sport that you take part in. Physical activity and competition get the blood flowing and make us healthy. It’s important, however, to make sure our kids learn to be good sports and play fairly. Here are some tips.

Role Model

If you’re yelling at the referee or other team’s coach, your kids are going to see this and think it’s okay. While you may not always agree on the call, you can disagree in a far more respectful way and your kids will learn too. Whether you’re aware of it or not, you’re the only role model your child has at this young age.

Play Fair

There are some sports where it’s easier to play unfair than others. For example, in baseball there are certain bats that give a player an advantage. If a kid grows up thinking unfair advantages are fine, this could lead to further problems such as performance enhancer abuse. Teaching kids the importance of a fair game will have everyone winning in the end.

Shake Hands

Have your kids show respect to the other team by shaking hands before and/or after the game. Make sure to talk to the kids about why it’s important to show respect and congratulate others on a good game.

Humble Winner/Mature Loser

When the game is over, you want your child to either be a humble winner or a mature loser. When they win, it’s important to teach them not to gloat to the opposing team. Likewise, when they lose, teach them not to pout or be immature about it. The last thing you want is to have your child be known for this unsportsmanlike characteristic.

Respect Rules

Getting your child to respect the rules of any game – whether it’s a family board game or a sports league they’ve joined – is very important to teaching sportsmanship. Make sure they understand that if even one person breaks the rules, it can ruin the fun experience for everyone!

Trash Talk

If your child or kids’ team talks trash and bullies on the field, they’re more likely to follow that same philosophy in other social situations. Bullying and name-calling should never be tolerated, off or on the field. This is setting a poor example for the future.

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