When your kids become involved in athletics, you simply want the best for them. Some believe the best means awards and trophies, while others believe in simply having fun. Being a competitor my whole life means I want both for my kids. If you just want to have fun, then its just an activity. Athletics is meant for competition and the pursuit of perfection (Being the Best), but at no time should this ever be detrimental to your child. The main message should always be for athletes to practice and compete to the best of their abilities; to be proud of their efforts.
Being a teacher/coach with many years of experience, I have seen many parents living vicariously through their children and the damage it can do. Never had I thought about another angle to be watched….Coaches living vicariously through their athletes. Never, that is, until one such coach took over for my daughter’s gymnastic team. Below are my feelings after dealing with a coach who lives vicariously through his gymnasts:
Believing in your speech that you cared for each gymnast and would take the program to a higher level– Made me a follower
Seeing gymnasts cry during practice– Made me Wonder
Watching multiple gymnasts struggle with fears, skills, and injuries– Made me Question
Believing that in your words, my daughter was disrespectful and disruptive in practices– Made me a Fool
Not trusting my instincts and leaving when I had serious doubts about your abilities to head the program– Made me the Idiot
Witnessing your lack of communication and your growing disrespect to gymnasts and to parents– Made me Angry
Seeing multiple individual state champions regress in skills– Made me Understand
Seeing my daughter, in a new gym, reclaim her PASSION and LOVE for gymnastics while being treated with respect– Makes me Cry
Hearing that a program I loved and supported is crumbling– Made me Sad
Hearing that others also see through your facade, recognize you for who/what you really are, and are leaving– Makes it Obvious
Learning you quit on kids and berate them like a Bully– Makes you Detrimental
Having you still pursuing an Elite Level Program after 30+ years– Makes you a Failure
In the end, my child is in a better place, confirmed by the smiles and positive attitude she displays on a daily basis since the move to a new gym. For this, I am thankful.