6 Back-in-School Tips for Over-Stretched Sports Parents
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Do you feel sports ready? There’s so much involved when it comes to being a sports parent, whether it’s driving to after-school practices and Saturday games, or washing seemingly endless amounts of dirty laundry. Let’s not forget planning the entire season calendar, packing snacks, meal prepping…and the list goes on. FlipGive–the team funding platform that has helped over 35,000 youth sports teams and clubs across North America raise $20 million–surveyed 1,000 American sports parents to help determine the main causes of stress when it comes to school sports, along with ways to tackle them.
You may already be on top of your sports-parenting game, especially if you live in one of the following five states:
- Mississippi (72% of parents reported feeling back-to-school ready.)
- Texas (69%)
- Virginia (68%)
- Georgia (66%)
- Ohio (65%)
If you live anywhere else, or if you could simply use some help streamlining your child’s sports season, try the following:
Organize Sports Calendars Early
Parents of kids who play school sports said they were 33% more stressed about the start of the new school year than parents of kids who don’t play on any school sports teams. One way to help relieve that stress? Treat your kid’s sports schedule like you do your work meetings and weekend social events, and use TeamSnap to add practices and games to your calendar and mobile device.
Build Solid Relationships
35% of dads and 11% of moms admit they’ve gotten into a heated argument at one of their child’s school-related sporting events–either with a referee, coach, or other parent. Pro tip: If you get to know somebody, you’re less likely to lose your cool. Plus, getting to know your youth athlete’s coaches can help open the lines of communication, and ultimately, help your child through anything they may experience during the school year.
Establish Healthful Routines
40% of sports parents report that the time commitment associated with their child’s sports involvement is their top cause of stress when the school season revs up. Make sure both you and your child get enough sleep. It also helps to establish set mealtimes and other routines to make for smoother school weeks.
It turns out sports moms and dads have very different goals for their youngsters’ athletic involvement. For moms, the top goal for their child is to have fun (38%). For sports dads, the top priority for their child is to learn teamwork and leadership skills (34%). With all of these goals in mind this back-to-school season, try to remember that a big part of youth sports is helping your child grow into a well-rounded, respectful adult who knows how to handle wins, losses, and adversity. A little fun mixed in is always a good thing, too.
Mind Proper Nutrition
It’s no secret that young athletes are usually hungry, and 95% of parents with kids who play school sports say nutritious meals and snacks are a top priority. Find some protein-packed snacks your kids like, and stick with them! Protein mixed with some carbs (hello PB & J!) can help your child feel fuller longer, and help them perform better when it comes to afternoon practices.
Fun fact: A relatively equal number of sports moms (59%) and dads (58%) said they drive the classic sports-parent minivan! To make those drives smooth, FlipGive recommends setting up a back-to-school carpool plan with parents who have kids that play on the same team as your child as far in advance as possible. It will help you cut down on last-minute planning stress, and help your child avoid the dreaded shame that comes with arriving to practice late.
To learn more about how parents are helping their kids succeed outside of the classroom and on the sports field this back-to-school season, please visit www.flipgive.com/teamsnap.