How to Keep Swimmers Motivated All Season:- To motivate a kid to performance is primarily the responsibility of a coach but it is no less a function of parents. A good coach is not necessarily one who trains scientifically and teaches finer points of technique, but he spots talent and motivates his pupils to perform. It is more so in the case of swimming as the coach is generally dealing with the pupils who are below 18 years of age. If the coach has to recognize potential youngsters and psychologically egg them on to develop themselves to their capabilities, the parents have to examine the entire exercise is much broader terms. For the parents, swimming is only one aspect of their child’s life. But what is more important for the parents is the development of the all-round personality of the child to be a fine and honorable citizen. With training- extrinsic motivation is also very important.
Pick a quote for each day. Each morning, or the previous night even, pick out a motivational swimming quote that you are going stand by over the course of the day. If you know that you are going to have an exceptionally difficult practice later that night, go with something along the lines of Winston Churchill’s, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” You can write out the quote on the top of your hand, or screenshot it and use it as the background on your cellular.
READ THIS:-Why You Have To Love Your Swimming Coach
As the well-known author says: “Ideally, a parent who values self-discipline, acceptance of responsibility, and competitive excellence is per-disposed to influence his child to adopt the values both as they relate to a swimming program and to countless other areas of interest. The role of the parent then is at its best to encourage a child not only to keep improving his performance, but to keep focused to endure thousands of yards day in and day out, to adhere to a strict dietary regimen, and to develop a competitive attitude that allows him to swim a little harder than he thought he could when he gets to a meet.”
Competition has a different effect or bearing on a performer. One concedes on the block, while another fights it out to succeed from the depth of despair. Here the coach has to play his role to prepare his fussy pupil psychologically so that he performance to the best of his ability and skill. While winning is indeed the ultimate aim of the competition, what is of paramount importance is to try hard, improve consistently and take win defeat as part of the competitive sport. No matter how keen he may be in his pupil, a coach is essentially a detected person. It is, however, not so with the parent, who expects too much from his kid as he is with the parent, who expect too much from his kids as he is emotionally involved with him. The child, therefore, comes under tremendous pressure to perform up to the unrealistic expectations of the parent. As long as the kid is succeeding, the parent is happy and basks in the glory of his child. When the child is unable to secure medals. the parent gets disappointed and disappointment leads to disenchantment. The outcome: tension develops. The child is essentially more frustrated than the parent’s disappointment. But many parents are unable to realize this. Out of frustration, the kid gives up; he avoids trying in order to remove himself from the scenario of competition.
Challenge yourself on the regular. Staying within the comfort zone is a one way ticket to Boresville. Each day challenge yourself within practice; there are fewer things more rewarding and more motivating than being able to say that you have done something for the very first time, or done something better than you ever have before.
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“The Austin American-Statesman reports: “Psychology for Swimmers could just as easily apply to any sport, or any endeavor in which improving performance is desired” and Runner’s World concurs, stating: “Replace the word: swimmer with runner and you’ve got your Runner’s book.””
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PARENTS’ ROLE To Motivate His Kids
Often, at the insistence of the parent. the kid is made to change his coach. He goes to another teacher. The situation generally does not improve. In fact, there is chance of deteriorating performance and the kid eventually walks out of the program or training clinic. It is said:”The child who is properly motivated, is the child who is helped to see what the sport called competitive swimming is all about: a lot of ribbons, a lot of medals, yes, but the sense of personal achievement that these trinkets represent, and achievement that has grown out of discipline, responsibility , and excellence. And the parents, the people who have the most influence on the child, can do most to understand and provide the kind of Extrinsic Motivation needed to reach that end.’
- DON’T COACH – Leave coaching to coaches. This includes pre-race psyching, motivation, after race critiquing, setting goals, enforcing additional cross training, etc.
- SUPPORT THE COACH – Your coaches are the experts. They need your support for everyone to “win”.
- SUPPORT THE PROGRAM – Get involved. Volunteer. Help out at meets, fundraisers, etc.
- BE YOUR CHILD’S BEST FAN – Support your child unconditionally. Do not withdraw love when your child performs poorly. Your child should not have to perform to win your love.
- SUPPORT AND ROOT FOR ALL ATHLETES ON THE TEAM – Foster teamwork. Your child’s teammates are not the enemy. When they go faster than your child, your child now has a wonderful opportunity to improve.
- DO NOT BRIBE OR OFFER INCENTIVES – Your job is not to motivate. Leave this to the coaching staff. Bribes will distract your child from proper race concentration.
- TAKE YOUR CONCERNS AND PROBLEMS DIRECTLY TO THE COACH – If you have a problem with the coach, do not go to other parents to discuss it. Go straight to the coach involved. Talking behind the coach’s back will not get you what you want.
- UNDERSTAND AND DISPLAY APPROPRIATE MEET BEHAVIOUR – Remember your child’s self-esteem and race performance is at stake. Be supportive and cheer but always be appropriate.
- MONITOR YOUR CHILD’S STRESS LEVEL AT HOME – Keep an eye on your athlete to make sure he is handling stress effectively from the various activities in his life.
- MONITOR EATING AND SLEEPING HABITS – Be sure your child is eating the proper foods and getting adequate enough rest.
- HELP YOUR CHILD KEEP HIS PRIORITIES STRAIGHT – Help your child maintain a focus on schoolwork, relationships and the other important things in life besides sports. Also’ if your child has made a commitment to one sport help him keep the priorities around this in mind.
- “REALITY TEST” FOR YOUR CHILD – If a swimmer, for example, comes out of the pool with a personal best time and a last place finish, help her understand that this is a “win”. Help her keep things in their proper perspective including losses, disappointments and failures.
- KEEP YOUR CHILD’S CHOSEN SPORT IN PERSPECTIVE – The sport should not be larger than life for you. If your child’s performances elicit strong emotions, keep these away from him. Remember your relationship will continue with your children long after their competitive days are over. Keep your goals and needs out of your child’s sport.
- BE AN APPROPRIATE LIASION TO THE COACH – Keep the coach informed as to how your child is responding to the experience (when appropriate). If your child is having trouble with something that happened at practice or with something the coach said, help the child deal with it and if necessary, speak directly with the coach. source:-usaswimming.org
Surround yourself with positive people. For a swimmer motivated all season, it is necessary to Be surrounded by people who are constantly digging at one another, complaining, and being otherwise unawesome is a true bummer. Not only is their negativity infectious, but it takes your focus off of the things that matter. Like your goals. Seek out swimmers and peers that have a positive outlook, and don’t engage people who live to complain.