TEAM PLACEMENT TIME
As we engage in team placements and teams are being formed it's a tough time for gym owners, coaches, athletes and parents that have to deal with the fall out.
That being said, how a parent deals with placements will have a direct result on how an athlete feels about her or him/self.
Teams are truly set up for the success of the athlete and program. Levels or age groups do not define who athletes are as people. When you allow your athlete to quit or switch programs because they were not placed where they felt they deserved or where their friends placed only sets them up for failure later in life. Society has become too reliant on quitting if people do not get their way or achieving success the first time around.
We need to teach our children to face their challenges and keep working hard to achieve their goals. Be aware of programs who will put your child wherever you demand...are they truly trying to set the best environment for your athlete or do they just want to get paid?
When we teach our children to quit because as parents our kids weren't placed where they or we wanted them we are teaching them about life skills....we are teaching them nothing is worth hard work! We all know nothing in life comes easy so now is the perfect opportunity to help your child learn a lesson they may use later in life!
Sit down and talk to your child. Make sure you know what she/he wants not what you want or expect. Then help your child achieve their goals, encourage them, listen to them, help them reach their goals by talking to the coaches and finding out what areas he/she needs to work on then help them work towards those goals as a team with the program and the staff. Coaches WANT your child to succeed and make their teams more successful! Realize cheerleading teams are made up on many skill components. Just because your athlete is doing a backhandspring on the tumble-trak they might not be able to do it within a fast-paced routine, or they may not jump or stunt at a level 2 yet. If you force your child to be where they don't belong they generally will fail and end up quitting or hating the sport because of their lack of success and ultimately their self-esteem will suffer. Think of it in these terms: would you force your children to move from grade 2 to grade 4 before they were ready?
Ultimately, team placements are not easy on anybody. Not every year will be magical or easy but if cheerleading is your athlete's sport work together with your child's program, coaching staff and help your child succeed by being positive, understanding and helping to provide the support or extra practice time to help them reach their goals. It ends up being a win-win for everyone when we work together, we don't compare our children and we trust the professionals!