The Signs of Pushing Kids Too Hard in Sports


Encouraging your kids to engage in sporting activities contributes to their physical, social and psychological development. If they are talented in sports, your support can help them unlock their potential. Most parents will buy their kids modern training equipment, send them to training camps or instructional programs, and hire coaches to provide the greatest opportunity. However, when kids are over-trained, they can be exposed to burnouts and injuries. Using an appropriate athletic plan can help protect kids from such health problems.

Physical Burnout

  • Kids who are subjected to intensive training sessions without sufficient breaks can run out of energy because of tired muscles. Although muscles become stronger by adapting to stress, the Boston Children's Hospital asserts that they need to rest and rebuild between the episodes of stress for optimal performance. If your child is often exhausted, looks unmotivated or has an appetite slump, his body could be experiencing difficulty withstanding the physical demands of the sport. Talk to his coaches about the issue and withdraw him from the training sessions to allow his muscles time to recover. Muscle overuse makes athletes susceptible to injuries.

Emotional Issues

  • Young athletes have to train harder to excel in the competitive sporting world. Most kids need immense mental strength to overcome their parents' huge expectations. If they fail to impress, they can suffer an emotional breakdown. Afraid of letting you down, they continue training to enhance their sporting skills. Don't wait on your kids’ coaches to note discomfort in your kids. According to a 2012 report published at, 92 percent of parents depend on coaches to keep their kids safe. Parents have to watch for the warning signs of emotional stress, such as restlessness, inability to concentrate and depression. Talk to your kids about their progress and discuss what you can do to improve their performance without stressing them.

Low Grades

  • In most sports, student athletes are required to attend morning workouts while other students are preparing for school. These kids are faced with a tough balancing act as they struggle to excel in both fields. Pushing them harder in sports might make them give up on their schoolwork. The Athens Drive High School, in a 2011 article published at, asserts that sports and extracurricular activities can cause students to become more focused on that activity instead of schoolwork. This could cause grades to decrease drastically. Besides, student athletes often get home from the training ground fatigued, unable to study or complete school assignments. Help your kids manage their time between schoolwork and sports to improve performance in both fields.

False Self-Beliefs

  • It is OK to encourage your kids to draw inspiration from accomplished athletes. However, when you demand a similar performance from them, they will try to meet your expectations and end up believing winning is the only way to gain your approval. This gives them a false impression of success. If your kids believe the only way to make you happy is training daily, they could be overwhelmed by your pressure. According to a 2009 article at, children start to believe they are defined by their sporting skills when their parents acknowledge them through their athletic feats. Parents should know winning is just one aspect of being an athlete. Building a sporting attitude in your kids takes time


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