You see it everywhere: children are playing a tennis match and their parents are close to the fence; they don't want to miss a single shot of their child's tennis match.
Most parents are not only clearly visible but also verbally they stand out.
They are coaching their children at every point in order to let their children win.
It happens everywhere, but is this behavior also preferable?
Thanks to Tennis Northern (New Zealand) for the picture.
Below are 6 reasons it's not smart for parents to coach their child during a tennis match.
1. It's against the rules.
According to the rules it's not allowed to coach players during a match.
As a parent, you must try to be an example for your child and follow the rules.
It's understandable that you want to support your child, but by being there and watching the match you are doing already a great job.
2. It's embarrassing for the player to hear your parents in public.
Hearing your parents coach you during the match is very embarrassing.
The pressure on the player will be higher, and the performance of the player often goes down. The fact that also other parents and players can hear your parents coaching you, makes the player insecure.
3. Most parents don't have a background as a tennis coach.
Often parents are telling their kids the wrong things or the wrong tactics because they don't have a background as a tennis coach.
It's the same when you go to the hospital and tell the doctor how to cure his patients when you have no medical background.
4. Often children are not listening to their parents, but they listen to their tennis coach.
Often you hear parents complaining that their child is not listening to them when they give their child technical/tactical advice. Of course not, children are listening especially to their tennis coach who is the tennis expert in their eyes. The tennis coach is their tennis hero, so they only listen to him.
5. The coaching of the parents can be opposite to the coaching of the tennis coach of the child.
The danger of parent-coaching is that they possibly are coaching their child opposite things compared to their tennis coach. The child will be very confused when his parents are telling him different things during the match compared to the opinion of their tennis coach.
Must he follow his parents or his tennis coach?
6. Coaching of the parents is mostly based on results, while the coaching of the tennis coach is also based on development.
Parents are often focused on short-term goals, as long as their child wins the point it's alright. Tennis coaches on the other hand are also focused on long-term goals.
They want their players to play matches in a certain way, so they can not only be successful now but also successful in the future. With only result goals, the pressure on the player is very high. With skill goals, the pressure on the player is lower, and these goals are easier to achieve.
Good luck tennis parents!