by Positive Coaching Alliance

What we are all being asked to do is the essence of some of the best life lessons sports can offer. Athletes learn through sports that there is great nobility in fighting for our teammates and are now being asked to come together to support one another. Great youth sports coaches work with athletes to teach them that hard work, sacrifice, and a servant-leader approach are key components of success. They create team environments that speak to a higher calling, one that takes precedence over individual concerns.

The current crisis asks our athletes and all of us to apply these ideas in a more critical situation. Coaches and parents won’t be able to erase the disappointment of athletes. They can, however, help them see that living up to this difficult civic responsibility is honorable and should become a source of pride.

As an athletic director, organizational leader, coach, or parent, here are a few more talking points and resources you might consider in handling this disappointment:

  • You could say, "It’s OK to be disappointed if you’re feeling bad" or "it’s not fair to have your season postponed or canceled—that’s understandable and you’re right to feel that way."
  • Sports teaches us that we can overcome whatever is thrown at us—you’re the kind of person who is resilient.
  • Even when you’re disappointed, this is a time to work on shifting your focus and application of control what you can control.
  • We want you to be an athlete for life, this is a time to work on how you’ll do that in the future.