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Education for Positive Youth Sports Experiences


Sport is an indispensable part of people’s lives, and physical education is a constituent element of young generations’ education. Sports enable children and young people to develop physically, mentally, and psychologically. These are the three major educational outcomes of physical education (Devine & Telfer, 2013).

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However, at present, these educational outcomes are fading as sport and academic ambitions start to prevail (Van Vuuren-Cassar, Swain, Rossado & Chatziefstathiou, 2014). There are numerous cases when coaches and parents lose their control and become violent during sports games of their children. As a result, children get a very bad example, and they can even be punished through suspension (Worst pee wee football brawl ever, 2010).

Researchers note that the major reason for such behavior is parents’ and coaches’ unfulfilled ambitions (Violence and bad parenting in youth sports, 2012). Clearly, the inappropriate behavior of parents and coaches negatively affects the development of students. It is possible to focus on five major aspects to understand this negative impact.

Practice and Experience

It has been acknowledged that practice and experience (students obtain during classes of physical education) enable students to realize their potential (Coker, 2013). Students acquire certain skills. They are taught how to move to complete various tasks. They are also taught how to cooperate effectively, which is also very important. Importantly, students may understand their bodies better. Their character can also develop through training.

Students Learn to Control Their Bodies Better

As has been mentioned above, students are taught to control their bodies better, which is important for their development. It is noteworthy that this educational outcome is associated with a significant amount of training. The process is quite lasting, and it can be associated with failures, which is the norm (Devine & Telfer, 2013). It is crucial to understand that.

Hick’s Law

It is also important that students are taught to react accordingly. These reactions can be particularly connected with the game. According to Hick’s law, increased uncertainty results in inaccurate responses. In other words, students may feel lost during a game if they do not know the exact moves. However, apart from learning game rules and specific movements, students also learn some patterns of social behavior during the game. Clearly, inappropriate behavior of parents becomes one of the possible responses, and, in the future, in similar situations, the student will be unable to react accordingly, or his proper reaction will be delayed as there is a great deal of uncertainty. Of course, coaches and parents are role models and should behave respectively.

Learner Task Environment Paradigm

Researchers note that sports are associated with the following paradigm: learning, task, and environment. These are three components of effective learning. Each game should be a good platform for learning. Students have to focus on tasks, and they should play in an appropriate environment so that efficient learning could take place.

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Ambitions and Educational Outcomes

Finally, it is important to remember that sports games are platforms for training and learning, as well as having fun and interacting with peers. Coaches and parents often impose too much pressure on children and make them focus on winning rather than the learning outcomes mentioned above. Parents should remember that their children should get the chance to develop properly instead of becoming a tool in their (parents’) desire to satisfy their own ambitions.

In view of the previously mentioned, it is important to make sure that coaches and parents will focus on the students’ needs. It is important to launch wide-scale discussions and even workshops where parents will be taught or encouraged to behave properly during sports games.

Reference List

Coker, C. (2013). Motor learning & control for practitioners. Scottsdale, AZ: Holcomb Hathaway Publishers.

Devine, C., & Telfer, H. (2013). Why are sport and physical education valuable?: Values, sport, and physical education. In J. Whitehead, H. Telfer & J. Lambert (Eds.), Values in youth sport and physical education (pp. 13-35). New York, NY: Routledge.

Van Vuuren-Cassar, G., Swain, J., Rossado, J.L., & Chatziefstathiou, D. (2014). Karen. In K. Armour (Ed.), Pedagogical cases in physical education and youth sport (pp. 263-277). New York, NY: Routledge.

Violence and bad parenting in youth sports. (2012). Web.

Worst pee wee football brawl ever. (2010). Web.

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