- Don’t try to live your life through your son. You had a chance to be young. Let your youngster do his thing. Don’t force football or any other sport down his throat.
- Don’t be negative with your son. It rubs off. If you complain about why your son isn’t in the starting lineup, he will do the same. Be positive. Motivate and encourage your son.
- Don’t be unrealistic. The good Lord gave us certain abilities. Accept your son as he is. We would all like to be big, tall, handsome, intelligent and strong, but it doesn’t happen that way. Accept what your son was blessed with and go on with your life. Make the best of it. It’s the same in football – someone may be bigger, faster, tougher, or smarter. Know your son’s limitations and encourage him to make the best of it. Accept his role on the team and be proud of him.
- Don’t criticize the coaching staff. How can you expect your son to perform to his fullest if all he hears from you about a coach is negative? The coach represents authority. Support the coach’s rules, philosophies, playbook, etc.
- Don’t be envious of other players. Treat each player as if he were your own son. Don’t dislike a player because you don’t like his parent(s).
- Don’t be a know it all. Coaches work with kids 12 months a year. They spend numerous hours in situations with kids that you may never see. In some cases, a coach may know a player better than the parent does. Be a good role model. Let the coach’s coach.
- Don’t be an absent parent. Monitor your son’s grades. Insist that your son study and earn good grades. If you put academics first, your son will be successful.
- Don’t neglect your son’s social activities. Monitor his friends, hangouts, girlfriend, curfew, language, and so on. Talk to your son about drugs, alcohol and tobacco use. Encourage your son to make the right choices. Communicate well in these areas with your son so that the wrong people don’t influence him.
- Don’t be selfish. Don’t use football for the wrong reasons. Don’t push your son to play for a scholarship. Doing so pressures him unduly. If he is good enough, he will earn a scholarship. Let him play because he loves the game.
- Don’t baby your son. Sever the umbilical cord. It’s a tough world out there. Let him begin preparing for it. Let the coaches push your son. Let his coach help to make him tougher mentally by challenging him.
10 important “don’ts” to help your son to be successful:
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Coach Stewart has coached football for 27 years, winning championships with 6th graders, 8th graders, high school freshman, and high school varsity. He coached 9 years at the youth and freshman level, always serving as head coach. After completing his college at age of 28 he has coached 21 years at the varsity level, 13 as the varsity head coach.