Why Johnny Hates Sports

Perhaps the answer is to show these parents and volunteers how detrimental their behavior is to their kids in the long run.

To get my mind wrapped around the answer to this question, I talked with one of the most respected child psychiatrists in the country, Dr. Alvin Rosenfeld, co-author of Hyper-Parenting and The Over-Scheduled Child, and frequent expert on child psychology issues for numerous TV shows, such as Good Morning America, Larry King Live, CBS Morning News, CBS Sunday Morning News, NBC Evening News, Today Show, Merv Griffin Show, Oprah Winfrey Show, Good Day New York and CNN News

Here’s what he had to say:

“What is so detrimental to the kids is that they get the impression that their parents care more about their accomplishments than about them as unique individuals. It makes them anxious rather than setting them at ease. This happens because parenting has become America’s most competitive adult sport. So, parents often forget that what their six-year-old needs from them is warmth, caring and support to help develop good character and friendships. Instead, young children are expected to perform in everything–including sports–at professional, not kid, levels. That expectation, the tension that goes with it and the hyper-parenting atmosphere harms their character, diminishes their ability to feel at ease on the ball field, and stunts their ability to develop their personalities fully. It also denies them that unconditional love every professional alive insists is essential for their mental health.”

No wonder Johnny hates sports.

Fred Engh is founder and CEO of the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) in West Palm Beach, Fla., which has been advocating positive and safe sports for children since 1981. He is also the author of “Why Johnny Hates Sports,” which is available on Amazon.com.

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