Parents impact their children’s lives like no other people can…in sports as in every other aspect. Parents, even those millions who coach their own kids, do best by their children when focusing on sports as a developmental opportunity, rather than a do-or-die, win-at-all-cost proposition.

Along the lines of a positive coach being a Double-Goal Coach®, who pursues winning and the even more important goal of teaching life lessons through sports, a positive parent is a Second-Goal Parent®, who focuses on that Second Goal, the life lessons. Unconditional love for their children regardless of athletic performance and a relentless commitment to helping them process the ups and downs of youth sports marks the positive sports parent.

Frequently asked questions

How can I help bring PCA to my child’s school or team?
You can make more parents, coaches and administrators aware of PCA. Spread the word. Share resources from the PCA Development Zone™ Resource Center via social media or individual communication with others in your community. To bring PCA more formally to a school, district, conference, team, league or parks-and-rec department, persuade those organizational leaders to request information from a PCA representative.
My child’s coach is not a Positive Coach. What should I do?
If the coach’s behavior bothers your child and your child has the maturity (sometimes as young as age 10) to self-advocate, help your child do so. That provides life lessons in self-advocacy that will be necessary in future school, work and family situations. If you must advocate for your child, do so privately with the coach, unless imminent threats to physical or emotional safety require immediate intervention). Meanwhile, here are articles How Parents Can Help Kids Learn Despite A Yelling Coach, and How Parents Can Deal With A Win-At-All-Cost Coach and Disagree With Your Child's Coach? How To Handle, And When To Intervene.
How can PCA help to inform the college recruitment process for my kid(s)?
Our website of free resources, the PCA Development Zone™ Resource Center, contains many video clips and other forms of advice to administrators, parents, coaches and student-athletes on what college coaches look for in recruits. Many of those resources emphasize character attributes that can and should be cultivated in kids for success in recruitment and throughout the rest of their lives. Other resources focus on the role of parents’ sideline behavior, how parents can work with high school/club coaches to prepare players for college recruitment and guidance for student-athletes in appropriate social media behavior. Click here to see resources on recruiting.
Parents on the sidelines at my child’s games yell at the refs and opposing coaches. What can I do to help maintain a positive atmosphere?
You can model the appropriate behavior and get like-minded spectators whom you know to join you in that effort. In some cases, you may want to – or need to – intervene in stopping that behavior before it escalates and causes a serious problem. Here are Three Steps to Take with Over-Exuberant Parents. And here are Game Day Tips for Sportsmanship and Honoring the Game.