Tips: A Parent’s Role in Preparing Student Athletes for College
Parents understand the importance of fostering independence in their children while they're in high school to prepare them for college. They also know that their student athlete has already cultivated valuable qualities that set them up for the independent life style of a college student athlete; discipline, commitment, focus, high energy, work ethic, ability to handle pressure, and resilience. Our good friends at MB Sports Camps recently highlighted some of the ways parents can prepare their student athletes for the transition to college.
If you have a student athlete dreaming of a college experience, consider the following tips and the opportunity that an overnight, study abroad, summer camp experience presents, in moving them closer to their personal, academic, and athletic goals.
Encourage a positive academic mindset. Value academic goals just as much as athletic ones, help your child build an identity beyond that of an athlete, and encourage working equally hard as a student and an athlete.
Help develop time management skills. Becky Hunnewell, University of Massachusetts scholar-athlete and swim team captain, says, "Time management is the most difficult part of being a student-athlete." Becky’s thoughts are echoed again and again amongst collegiate athletes. While your child is still in high school, occasionally remind him/her about the importance of taking increased responsibility for waking up, scheduling their day, getting to practice, and devoting sufficient time and energy to studies, but still leave time for chores, employment, and social life.
Encourage healthy habits. Support the value of self-care. By getting enough sleep, eating well, and focusing on overall physical and mental health a student athlete will be in a better position for success. Get 7-8 hours of sleep a night, learn about nutrient-rich diets, provide a safe environment for releasing emotional stresses, lets your youngster know he/she has outlets to turn to for support.
Use NCAA resources. It’s important to know that the NCAA is the governing force for college and university athletics. Make sure you, your child, athletic directors, guidance counselors, and high school coaches know about the eligibility requirements and application processes. Build a team around your child’s success.
For more on this topic, visit MomsTeam: The Trusted Source for Sports Parents