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09/19/18

Talking with Your Child When They Want to Quit a Sport

It’s always tough when your athlete wants to quit a sport. There are so many variables that go into why kids decide to leave a sport behind and it can be difficult to get the real reason out of them. If your child has approached you wanting to quit, think about how to respond and be sensitive to the subject.

I went to a school where basketball was everything. Everyone was playing it, it was the popular sport, and I wanted to give it a shot. I tried out the first year I could and didn’t make the team. I went through a program that year and tried out again for the school team the following year and I made it!

I was so excited…until the season got started. I hated playing the sport. I wasn’t good, I wasn’t confident, and I wanted to quit. When I told my parents, my Dad said I had to finish out the season.

I learned such a valuable lesson that day. My Dad sat me down and we talked about why I wanted to quit—all valid reasons. But I had made a commitment to myself, to my coach, and to my team. Even if I didn’t feel like they would care (let’s be honest, they probably wanted me to quit, I was that bad!), I had to stick with what I started.

That lesson has stayed with me in life. When you start something, something as simple and mundane as cleaning out your closet, picking up a room, etc., it’s important to finish the task.

If your kiddo wants to quit, you have to ask some tough questions. Of course, if your child is in danger in any way, they should be removed from that situation immediately. But, when it’s a matter of preference, encourage your kids to stick with what they’ve started, at least until the season ends. They might be a little bitter, but years down the road, they’ll understand the lesson and be able to apply it to real life experiences.