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  • Writer's pictureLaura Smith

How Parents at the Collegiate Level Are Setting a Good Example.

Updated: Sep 6, 2019

Cooper River, New Jersey, March 2019. I walked up to what I assumed was the KU parent area. There were about 6 or so people standing alongside the river at my daughter's first regatta.....ever.....She was a high school soccer player and CrossFit athlete, turned collegiate rower. But that is a different story for a different time.

This is short and simple post. Very simple. It is the collegiate parents that have if figured out.

Support your child.

Support ALL of the kids on the team.

Support the coaches.

Support the team.

After only two regattas I have determined that the KU rowing parents are there for the kids. Their kids. Others' kids. Period.

I asked one of the senior rowing parents, '"So how do we know where KU placed in that race?"

"Oh we don't care. We just want to know how our girls feel about their race. Sometimes we ask what the coaches say afterwards," What a relief!

As girls would ascend on our group of parents after their race I could not tell how their race had gone. I couldn't tell if they had won or lost. Why?

Because the parents were cheering and the girls were smiling.

Nobody was sad. Nobody was mad. Nobody yelled. They just cheered.

Because all of that other stuff ...that is for the coaches and the athletes to sort through. They are the ones that should be concerned with winning. That is their job. Not ours.

So why...why do we NOT do this with our younger kids? Probably lack of knowledge, experience or lack of parental maturity.

Yes, we need to teach kids a work ethic; to do their best and put out maximum effort.

Yes, officials can be wrong. So can parents. So can kids. It's part of the deal.

Yes, some coaches can stink. And we need to teach our kids to learn to deal with that.

Yes, you might know more about the sport than everyone out there. But if coaches wanted your input, they would ask for it, just like they ask you to bring snacks after the game.

What we need to be asking our kids after a game is, "How did YOU feel about YOUR game/race performance?" Because it is not OUR game, race, performance. Take it from the KU rowing parents.


Sarasota, Florida. My mom and I got to watch the races, buy Hailey and her friends some lattes and spend time supporting her and her teammates.



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